1286.0 - Family, Household and Income Unit Variables, 2014  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 19/02/2015   
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COLLECTION METHODS

STANDARD QUESTION MODULE

The methodology for collecting 'Social marital status' varies according to the type of collection and the level of detail required. In household surveys, broad 'Social marital status' is always derived from information collected on the household form.

Where more detailed information is required, a computer-assisted interviewing (CAI) module is activated. This contains an integrated question set which allows further levels of detail to be ascertained and also collects data on 'Registered marital status'. This integrated method can be used as either an element of the CAI package or in the self-completed format presented below.

Interviewer-based collections

Deriving 'Social marital status' from 'Relationship in household'

Broad 'Social marital status' is always the first level of this variable to be derived from the 'Relationship in household' variable. The derivation of detailed 'Social marital status' requires the collection of broad 'Registered marital status' as well. Details of the type of de facto marriage present may be obtained by asking additional questions.

The codes and categories of 'Relationship in household' that are required to derive 'Social marital status' are:


1Husband, wife or partner
11In a registered marriage
12In a de facto marriage
15In a de facto marriage, opposite-sex couple
16In a de facto marriage, same-sex couple
17In a de facto marriage, male same-sex couple
18In a de facto marriage, female same-sex couple

2Lone parent

3Child under 15

4Dependent student (aged 15-24 and studying full-time)

5Non-dependent child

6Other related individual

7Non-family member

91Visitor



The following points should be noted:
  • The scope of the 'Social marital status' variable does not include people under the age of 15 years.
  • The operational definition of 'Social marital status' confines marriages within households. If a married couple are not usually resident together they are considered to be 'Not married' in the 'Social marital status' classification but they would be considered 'Married' in the 'Registered marital status' classification providing they are not separated from each other. People who are not usual residents are classified as a 'Visitor' in the 'Relationship in household' classification and are out of scope of the 'Social marital status' classification. Footnotes should be added to any output to explain the details of the 'Social marital status' classification (e.g. 'The category 'not married' includes people who are not currently living with their registered marriage spouse or with a de facto partner': see the 'Output' section).
  • A criterion for the 'Husband, wife, or partner in a registered marriage' category in the 'Relationship in household' classification is that marriage partners are of opposite sex. People in this category are coded to 'Married' in the broad 'Social marital status' classification and to 'Married in a registered marriage' in the detailed 'Social marital status' classification. people classified as 'Husband, wife, or partner in a de facto marriage' in the 'Relationship in household' classification are coded to 'Married' in the broad 'Social marital status' classification and to 'Married in a de facto marriage' in the detailed 'Social marital status' classification. Codes 15-18 in the 'Relationship in household' classification can be used to further disaggregate data according to whether the couples are of the same or opposite sex (see Table 1).
  • People classified as 'Lone parent', 'Dependant student (aged 15-24 and studying full-time)', 'Non-dependant child', 'Other related individual' and 'Non-family member' are coded to 'Not married'.
'Social marital status' and 'Registered marital status' are reported from interviewer based household surveys using the three stage method outlined below. These stages are usually performed in the ABS using the CAI instrument.

Broad 'Relationship in household' data are used to identify usual residents of a household who are aged 15 years or older. In particular, the data are used to identify people who are in a couple relationship with another member of the household. A series of marital status questions is then used to distinguish between registered and de facto marriages and to identify the 'Registered marital status' of people who are in scope.

Stage 1 - Deriving broad 'Social marital status'

In household-based collections, the broad 'Social marital status' of each household member is derived primarily from 'Relationship in household' information. 'Age' and 'Usual residency' data are also required as parties to 'Social marital status' must be aged 15 years or over and be usual residents of the same dwelling.

A 'Social marital status' of 'Married' exists when the relationship between two people aged 15 years and over and usually resident in the same household is reported as: husband, wife, spouse, partner, de facto, common law husband/wife/spouse, lover, boyfriend or girlfriend (opposite sex couples only). Responses of 'Child under 15' and 'Visitor' indicate people who are out of scope of this variable. All other responses are coded as 'Not married'.

This derivation will result in broad 'Social marital status' classifications of:


1Married
2Not married


Stage 2 - Deriving detailed 'Social marital status'

To derive detailed 'Social marital status', part of the 'Registered marital status' variable must also be collected. A 'Social marital status' of 'Married in a registered marriage' exists when the relationship between two people of the opposite sex who usually live in the same household is reported as husband, wife, spouse or partner and their 'Registered marital status' is reported as registered married.

A 'Social marital status' of 'Married in a de facto marriage' exists when the relationship between two people who usually live in the same household is reported as partner, de facto, common law husband/wife/spouse, fiance, lover, boyfriend or girlfriend (opposite sex couples only), etc.; or when their relationship is reported as husband, wife or spouse and their 'Registered marital status' is reported as a category other than registered married.

Responses of 'Child under 15' and 'Visitor' indicate people who are out of scope of this variable. All other responses are coded as 'Not married'.

To identify a registered marriage, Q1 below is asked (once per opposite sex couple) to determine if a husband, wife or partner relationship is either a registered marriage or a de facto marriage. People in same-sex couples are sequenced to Q2.


Q1. Are (you)..... and (Partner's name) in a registered marriage?
YesEnd
NoGo to Q2



If the answer is 'Yes', the detailed 'Social marital status' of each member of the couple is 'Married in a registered marriage' (see Table 1). If the answer is 'No', the detailed 'Social marital status' is 'Married in a de facto marriage' (also see Table 1).


TABLE 1: 'SOCIAL MARITAL STATUS' DECISION TABLE
Broad 'Social marital status'Sexes of coupleQuestion 1Detailed 'Social marital status'
MarriedOpposite sexYesMarried in a registered marriage
MarriedOpposite sexNoMarried in a de facto marriage
MarriedSame-sex *Married in a de facto marriage
Not married * *Not married
Not applicable * *Not applicable

NOTE: * Data from this question not required to derive detailed 'Social marital status'.


Further details of same-sex couple de facto marriages are identified by cross classifying with the couples' reported sex.

Stage 3 - Deriving 'Registered marital status'

This stage is necessary for the collection of the 'Registered marital status' variable. If the answer to Q1 above is 'Yes', then the 'Registered marital status' of each member of the couple is 'Married'. If the answer is 'No' the following question is asked:


Q2. What is ....'s present marital status?
Never married1End
Widowed2End
Divorced3End
Separated but not divorced4End
Registered married5End
De facto6Go to Q3
Single7Go to Q3
Not married8Go to Q3



'Registered marital status' is coded according to the response category chosen in Q2 above (see Table 2). However, some respondents may give answers that are different from the first five options listed in Q2. The categories 'de facto', 'single' and 'not married' are included on the interview form or the interviewer's computer screen. However, these categories are not included on any prompt card that is shown to the respondent.

If the response 'De facto', 'Single' or 'Not married' is given rather than one of the five standard response categories above, the following question is asked:


Q3. Has ...... ever been in a registered marriage?
YesQ4
NoEnd


If the response is 'No', then the person's 'Registered marital status' is 'Never married'. If the response is 'Yes', the following question is asked:


Q4. Is ...... widowed, divorced or separated?
Widowed1End
Divorced2End
Separated3End


'Registered marital status' is coded accordingly (see Table 2).


TABLE 2: 'REGISTERED MARITAL STATUS' DECISION TABLE

Detailed 'Social marital status'Question 2Question 3Question 4'Registered marital status'
Married in a registered marriage * * *Married
Married in a de facto marriage; or Not married1, 2, 3, 4, 5 * *Coded to Q2 response
Married in a de facto marriage; or Not married6, 7, 8Yes1, 2, 3Coded to Q4 response
Married in a de facto marriage; or Not married6, 7, 8No *Never married
Not applicable * * *Not applicable

NOTE: * Data from this question not required to derive 'Registered marital status'.

Question 2:
1 = Never married
2 = Widowed
3 = Divorced
4 = Separated but not divorced
5 = Registered married
6 = De facto
7 = Single
8 = Not married

Question 4:
1 = Widowed
2 = Divorced
3 = Separated


Self-completed collections

The data that form the input to the 'Social marital status' classification are derived from those collected for 'Relationship in household'. The question module is explained in the 'Relationship in household' standard. The methodology is the same as that described above in 'Stage 1 - Deriving broad 'Social marital status''.

The Census of Population and Housing also asks the following question about 'Registered marital status', responses to which are used to refine 'Social marital status' in the manner described above in 'Stage 2 - Deriving detailed 'Social marital status''.


Q. What is the person's present marital status?
(Married refers to registered marriages)
Never married
Widowed
Divorced
Separated but not divorced
Married



STANDARD INPUT CATEGORIES


The standard input categories are the same as the categories of the 'Social marital status' classification with the additional supplementary category, 'Not stated':


Married
Married (not further defined)
Married in a registered marriage
Married in a de facto marriage
Married in a de facto marriage, opposite sex couple
Married in a de facto marriage, same-sex couple
Married in a de facto marriage, male same-sex couple
Married in a de facto marriage, female same-sex couple

Not married
Not married

Not stated
Not stated


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