The widow of slain NYPD cop Wenjian Liu just got a major boost from state pols in her bid to secure Social Security benefits for the couple’s daughter — who was born three years after her hero dad’s death.
The state Legislature unanimously passed a bill last week that paves the way for benefits for the tot as it addresses the fact that state inheritance laws haven’t yet caught up with in-vitro technology.
“The state law left the Liu family high and dry,” said local Sen. Andrew Gounardes (D-Brooklyn), the bill’s co-author, to The Post.
“We tailored the bill for Angelina to get it over the finish line,’’ he said, referring to the Liu’s daughter.
Detective Liu was shot and killed alongside his cop partner, Officer Rafael Ramos, in a Brooklyn ambush in 2014 — a double assassination that shook the city.
But Liu’s wife, Pai Xia Chen, was still able to conceive and give birth to Angelina in 2017 using her dead husband’s preserved semen that was extracted from him just before he died.
The couple had only been recently married when he died and planned to have kids.
Yet the federal government doesn’t recognize such children when it comes to Social Security assistance, deferring to New York state’s inheritance laws, which also make no allowance for kids conceived this way.
Under New York’s current estate and inheritance law, the couple’s daughter is not considered Liu’s “biological” child because he didn’t provide written consent for the use of his sperm in the presence of two witnesses.
The new bill — dubbed “Angelina’s Law” and co-authored by state Assemblyman Peter Abbate (D-Brooklyn) — revises the Estates, Powers and Trusts Law to establish that the little girl is legally considered the genetic child of Wenjian Liu for purposes of “succession or inheritance.”
The bill was first introduced in September 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic.
Gounardes said he wants to draft another bill to cover all families in similar situations in the future.
Liu’s wife, Pia Xen, said, “I’m incredibly delighted to hear this bill has passed and the legacy of my late husband Detective WenJian Liu can be honored.
“I am extremely thankful that our daughter Angelina will be treated just like all other line of duty children. No words can express my deepest and most heartfelt thanks to the Detectives Endowment Association for advocating for this historic legislation and I am especially thankful to Senator Gounardes for tirelessly advancing and passing this truly groundbreaking law.”
Gov. Andrew Cuomo must still decide whether to sign the bill to make it law.
“I hope the governor does the right thing and signs the bill,” the senator said.
Cuomo’s office had no immediate comment Sunday.