In a case that illustrates how technology advances more quickly than the law, a federal appeals court has ruled that children born as a result of in vitro fertilization long after their father has died cannot be denied Social Security survivor benefits solely because they would not be entitled to inherit under state law.

“It goes without saying that these technologies were not within the imagination, much less the contemplation, of Congress when the relevant sections of the act came to be, and that they present a host of difficult legal and even moral questions,” U.S. Circuit Judge Maryanne Trump Barry said in Capato v. Commissioner of Social Security .

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