It cannot be the intention that it is better for women to work less, right?

47% of women are still financially dependent on their partner. Sigrid Hemels, professor of Tax Law at Erasmus School of Law, writes in the AD that this phenomenon is only partly due to traditional patterns. The government also plays a role in maintaining this situation, says Hemels.

Hemels points to the kitchen sink subsidy as an example, which until recently still existed: the less someone earns, the more tax credit their partner will receive. Such policies especially discourage women from working. Hemels sees a shift in women's labour emancipation among her former students. However, especially those with a bicultural background who have seen both their parents work hard for a good future. This group of women really does not sit at home. Looking at women's further labour emancipation, Hemels considers it extra important that full-time work is not made unattractive by the government.

However, several political parties argued in their election manifesto to reinstate the family tax, a policy measure from the 1950s, in which families with double-income couples are anything but stimulated. Within this family tax, both partners' income is added together, with the result that a decrease in the earnings of one of the partners means that the family as a whole has to pay considerably less income tax. Hemels is therefore not in favour of reintroducing this family taxation: "The tax system can be seen as a benchmark. Surely we should not want to propagate that it is better if women work less, right?"


Prof. Sigrid Hemels

More information

Read the full article in AD (in Dutch) here.

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