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Astrue v. Capato Argument Preview: Who is a Decedent's 'Child'?

3 Pages Posted: 31 Mar 2012 Last revised: 30 Sep 2012

Kristine S. Knaplund

Pepperdine University School of Law

Date Written: 2012


In this SCOTUSblog posting, Professor Knaplund provides a preview of the oral arguments in the Supreme Court case of Astrue v. Capato. This case involves the determination of whether a "postmortem conception" child - that is, a child conceived and implanted after a parent's death - is the late parent's child for the purpose of awarding Social Security survivor's benefits. The key question in the case is whether an application for benefits who is the biological or undisputed child of a deceased wage earner must also establish that he is entitled to inherit in intestacy from the decedent under state law.

Keywords: Social Security, benefit, survivor, postmortem conception, deceased, inherit, assisted reproduction, Supreme Court, ART, dependent, federalism, federal law, state law, reproduce, parent, child

Suggested Citation

Knaplund, Kristine S., Astrue v. Capato Argument Preview: Who is a Decedent's 'Child'? (2012). SCOTUSblog, March 2012 ; Pepperdine University Legal Studies Research Paper 2012/14. Available at SSRN:

Kristine S. Knaplund (Contact Author)

Pepperdine University School of Law ( email )

24255 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA 90263
United States

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