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A Reason to Wait: The Effect of Legal Status on Teen Pregnancy

Elira Kuka (), Na'ama Shenhav and Kevin Shih ()

AEA Papers and Proceedings, 2019, vol. 109, 213-17

Abstract: Although teen pregnancy has been on the decline in the United States, it remains among the highest within developed countries. Hispanics, who are more likely to be undocumented immigrants, lead this trend, yet the role of legal status has yet to be considered. To investigate this question, we examine teenage fertility responses to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which provides temporary legal status to undocumented youth. We find that DACA reduced the likelihood of having a teenage birth by 1.6 percentage points and eliminated roughly half of the gap in teenage childbearing between documented and undocumented women.

JEL-codes: J13 J15 J16 J18 K37 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
Note: DOI: 10.1257/pandp.20191013
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Handle: RePEc:aea:apandp:v:109:y:2019:p:213-17