CLEVELANDWhen retiring, men are more likely than women to move directly from work to retirement, but overall the retirement patterns for dual-income married couples are complex and call for additional considerations in planning for the future, according to a new study from the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences at Case Western Reserve University.
"It's no longer the reality that retirement is a straight path from working to retiring for many people," said Angela Curlthe lead author, a Case Western Reserve graduate and assistant professor of social work at the University of Missouri. "People can go in and out of retirement, and women may leave the workforce at an earlier age than men for a variety of reasons, including caring for a sick family member."
Curl and Aloen Townsend, associate professor of social work at Case Western Reserve, examined data from the National Institute of Aging's longitudinal study called the Health and Retirement Survey about life as older American approach retirement and retire. They gathered information about how 1,118 married couples with dual incomes came to retire.
The researchers' findings were published in the article "Retirement Transitions among Married Couples" in the recent Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health. It will also appear in the forthcoming The Older Worker and the Changing Labor Market, published by Haworth Press.
Prior to this study, the vast volume of research on retirement primarily focused on the individual. This is among the first studies to look at women in retirement, and one of the longest studies of married couples moving into this phase of their marriage, said Townsend.
Using data collected over eight years between 1992 and 2000, the researchers followed the transition patterns for couples where one individual was between the ages of 51 and 61 at the beginning of the study. These couples were employed full or part time and were not self emplo
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Case Western Reserve University