State law has just caught up with in-vitro technology.
A bill signed Saturday by Gov. Kathy Hochul would ensure that the 3-year-old “miracle daughter” of a New York City police murderer — who was conceived after her death — would be legally considered her biological child.
The bill was passed unanimously last week by state lawmakers to help Wenjian Liu’s widow secure Social Security benefits for Angelina.
When it comes to Social Security assistance, the federal government does not recognize children, citing New York state’s inheritance laws, which offer no allowance for children conceived in this way.
Under current New York estate and inheritance law, the couple’s daughter was not considered Liu’s “biological” child—as she had not provided written consent for the use of her sperm in the presence of two witnesses.
Liu was shot and killed in a 2014 Brooklyn ambush along with his police partner, Officer Rafael Ramos – a double murder that shook the city.
Liu’s wife, Pai Xia Chen, was able to conceive and give birth to Angelina in 2017 using her deceased husband’s preserved semen, which was extracted from him just before he died.
The couple had recently been married when he died, and they plan to have children.
“The case of Angelina and Wenjian Liu is extraordinary and requires special consideration,” Governor Hochul said in a statement. “I’m proud to make sure Angelina Liu gets the benefits she deserves, and I hope that with the signing of this law, Angelina and her family are able to remember Detective Liu in peace.”