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Can I do a secret paternity DNA test?

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Following a ruling from Germany's Constitutional Bundesverfassungsgericht on February 13th 2007, the German Bundestag has created laws regarding paternity testing.

Any DNA testing performed without the other parent's consent is punishable with a € 5.000 fine.

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Since February 2010, the Gene Diagnostics Act (Gendiagnostikgesetz, GenDG) has to be applied for all genetic testing.

We understand that people sometimes want to know DNA testing results before they alarm other persons, perhabs even unnecessarily. Still, the Gene Diagnostics Act stipulates very clearly under Threat of punishment that no secret paternity test or relationship test may be performed. The law not only addresses the customers but also the laboratories which risk their accreditation, their license to perfom DNA tests.

The law not only forbids secret DNA tests. Also, regular external inspection of laboratory procedures are mandatory and fully informed consent of all test participants is now required

While on the one hand secret DNA testing is no longer possible the law also fixed the right for everybody to know their origins.

Thus, should, for example, a mother block an estranged father from legally testing just by not giving her consent, a father can now apply to the court directly and, if it is decided that child will not significantly suffer from the information, obtain the test regardless of the refusal from the opposing mother.

Previously, it was possible for everybody to have a lab test cigarette buds or baby's pacifier etc without the knowledge of the persons concerned. With this act the legislator now wants to prevent persons being robbed of their DNA material clandestinely.

A paternity test may still be conducted privately. You do not have to go to court for each DNA test. The written consent of all participants and a witnessed sampling is all you need.

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