Now in Legal Rebels:
Posted Nov 14, 2011 06:01 pm CST
The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether children conceived by in vitro fertilization after the death of their biological father are entitled to collect Social Security survivor benefits.
The case involves twins conceived after their father, Robert Capato, died of cancer. Capato’s widow, Karen, used frozen sperm for the in vitro process. The Philadelphia-based 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals had ruled in January that the twins fit the definition of “child” in the Social Security Act.
The issue is surfacing more often, according to government court papers cited by Bloomberg. More than 100 applications have been filed for survivor benefits for children conceived posthumously.
The government contends the children are not entitled to benefits because they could not inherit from their father under applicable state law in Florida. SCOTUSblog posted the cert petition (PDF).