Immigrant Integration Policy and Family Outcomes

So Yoon Ahn

Immigrant Integration Policy and Family Outcomes

So Yoon Ahn (University of Illinois at Chicago)

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The paper investigates the impacts of the 2014 amendment to the screening criteria for issuing F-6 marriage migrant visas in South Korea on family outcomes. This legislative change aimed to mitigate the prevalence of "quick" cross-border marriages, prone to rapid divorces, and to safeguard foreign brides from domestic abuse. The amendment introduced stringent requirements, including language proficiency and income thresholds. We find a significant reduction in divorce probabilities after the implementation of the amendment. We show that this finding is not entirely driven by compositional effects. Moreover, we also find that enhanced language proficiency among migrant spouses increases marital satisfaction. However, despite these improvements in language skills, we did not find any significant enhancements in labor market outcomes for migrant spouses.


So Yoon Ahn is an Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Her primary research interests include family and gender economics. She is interested in how households make decisions in different contexts. Her current work focuses on the impacts of cross-border marriages on marriage markets and households. She is also interested in how gender wage gap affects various household outcomes including consumption and charitable giving. She received her Ph.D. in Economics from Columbia University and her B.A. and M.A. in Economics from Yonsei University.