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DNA tests show 33% of men not biological father

Irish Examiner


“DNA tests show 33% of men not biological father”

(By Conor Ryan) 

A DNA profiling company is testing the percentage of children at a rate of more than 300 a year and one in three tests are confirming the supposed father is not the natural father. 

The largest amount of queries received from this service are from mothers-in-law who doubt there is any blood ties with their new grandchildren. 

This is according to figures released from Ormond Quay Paternity Services (OQPS) in Dublin. It said 35% of DNA tests carried out on children showed the wrong man was assumed to be the father. 

Operation’s director of OQPS Brian O’Dwyer said there has been a surge of interest in these paternity tests. 
“Very often we are dealing with people who have a casual relationship and a child has been born. That is the main type of profile of people who are taking tests.” 
“While one-in-three looks to be a very shocking figure it has to be said it is typically only people who have doubts already would go for a test so these figures reflect them rather than the general population”, he said. The company, which was established 18-months-ago, said it has experienced a steady growth in business. In the first three months of this year more than 70 tests were conducted. 
OQPS’s figures show 88% of tests are from couples that do not share a married name. 
Mr. O’Dwyer said this reflects changes in sexual habits and other cultural trends. 
“I suppose it does say something about our drink culture and declining morals when it comes to sex.” 
“What we are seeing is an awful lot of queries from Irish mothers who do not think their son is the father. After this group it is pretty much evenly split between men and women,” said Mr. O’Dwyer. 
The tests can only be carried with the consent of the child’s mother and a DNA swab must be taken from both parents and the child. 
Its results are black-and-white and if they return a negative finding Mr. O’Dwyer said this is more than 99.99 % accurate. 
In order for the test to be validated as evidence in a family law dispute it must be carried out in the presence of a court appointed doctor. 

Family law expert Geoffrey Shannon said in cases where the registered father finds he is not the biological parent, the process for amending the official records is not complicated. 

“This is now just a straight-forward registration issue. The legislation has been cleared up and it is dealt with as a procedural matter if a couple want to change the father’s details on the birth certificate,” said Mr. Shannon.