Disability and Social Security Reforms: The French Case

33 Pages Posted: 16 May 2011 Last revised: 7 Feb 2021

See all articles by Luc Behaghel

Luc Behaghel

Paris School of Economics; National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies (INSEE) - Center for Research in Economics and Statistics (CREST)

Didier Blanchet

National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies (INSEE)

Thierry Debrand

Research and Information Institute for Health Economics (IRDES)

Muriel Roger

Banque de France

Date Written: May 2011

Abstract

The French pattern of early transitions out of employment is basically explained by the low age at "normal" retirement and by the importance of transitions through unemployment insurance and early-retirement schemes before access to normal retirement. These routes have exempted French workers from massively relying on disability motives for early exits, contrarily to the situation that prevails in some other countries where normal ages are high, unemployment benefits low and early-retirement schemes almost non-existent. Yet the role of disability remains interesting to examine in the French case, at least for prospective reasons in a context of decreasing generosity of other programs.The study of the past reforms of the pension system underlines that disability routes have often acted as a substitute to other retirement routes. Changes in the claiming of invalidity benefits seem to match changes in pension schemes or controls more than changes in such health indicators as the mortality rates. However, our results suggest that increases in average health levels over the past two decades have come along with increased disparities. In that context, less generous pensions may induce an increase in the claiming of invalidity benefits partly because of substitution effects, but also because the share of people with poor health increases.

Suggested Citation

Behaghel, Luc and Blanchet, Didier and Debrand, Thierry and Roger, Muriel, Disability and Social Security Reforms: The French Case (May 2011). NBER Working Paper No. w17055, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1841291

Luc Behaghel (Contact Author)

Paris School of Economics ( email )

48 Boulevard Jourdan
Paris, 75014 75014
France

National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies (INSEE) - Center for Research in Economics and Statistics (CREST) ( email )

15 Boulevard Gabriel Peri
Malakoff Cedex, 1 92245
France

Didier Blanchet

National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies (INSEE) ( email )

18, Boulevard Adolphe-Pinard
75675 Paris Cedex 14
France

Thierry Debrand

Research and Information Institute for Health Economics (IRDES) ( email )

10 rue Vauvenargues
75018 Paris
France

Muriel Roger

Banque de France ( email )

France

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