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Frequently asked questions

Why should I commission Expert Witness Institute Dr. Lauk & Dr. Breitling to do a paternity test?


Because you expect the results of this extraordinarily important test to be absolute dependable!


  1. The analysis and evaluation of the test results are prepared by degreed and recognized experts with long-term experience in parentage testing for use in court.
  2. All analyses are prepared exclusively by qualified specialists.
  3. Our analysis procedures are examined at least five times per year by national (GEDNAP) and international (AABB Parentage Testing) round-robin experiments and have always been confirmed to be accurate.
  4. Our quality management system, which is independently tested (accredited in accordance with the DIN EN ISO 17025 and DIN EN ISO 9001 standards), guarantees you maximum security and reliability when you commission our institute to conduct your test.


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How conclusive is the paternity test?


Degreed scientists with long-term experience in parentage testing and the deployment of the most modern instruments and technology guarantee a maximum of security and conclusiveness.


For both test reports for use in court and for reports for private use, a sufficient number of genetic markers is examined in order to confirm 100% exclusion or a paternity probability of at least 99.999%. In the event of a likelihood ratio of 99.9%, German courts consider paternity to be “practically proven.” The analysis of up to 30 different genetic identity markers on the basis of internationally recognized biostatistic formulas makes this high degree of test result reliability possible.


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What is the process for the tests? What do I have to do?


For a court-recognized test report, you will first receive an order form where you fill in the names and addresses of the persons to be tested, as well as the names of the doctors, who will be taking samples. After sending the order form back to our institute, we make the necessary documentation for sample taking and identity confirmation available to the doctors. At the same time, you will be requested to see the doctors involved to have samples taken.


For a test report for private use only, you will receive a free swab set with the necessary cotton swabs, easily understandable instructions for taking the swabs, as well as an order form. You will then simply return the swabs to us in the enclosed envelope, together with the completed and signed order form.


Our institute will then isolate the DNA from the sent in samples and will utilize the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) to examine 15-20 critical DNA genetic markers.


Within 5-10 business days after receipt of the samples, you will receive a conclusive and easily understandable report with a biostatistic analysis.


You can request order forms and the free swab set online, by phone, by fax, or by e-mail.


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Can the paternity test be performed without the child’s mother?


Yes, it is possible without the mother.


However, if only the child and the supposed father are tested, no genetic information about the mother will be available. This lack of information can be partially balanced out by examining more genetic markers.


In the usual parentage trio test (father, child, and mother), we first examine 15 different DNA markers for each of the three individuals. In so-called deficiency cases, when the mother is missing, the number of genetic markers to be analyzed is routinely raised to 20 markers per person. Nevertheless, the conclusiveness of the result is usually higher when the child’s mother is included.


Legally, a parentage test is an infringement of the individual’s personal rights. Without a court order, an individual’s parentage can be tested and determined only with his/her consent. In the case of minors, the consent of the parent or guardian is necessary.


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How long do the tests take?


After receipt of all necessary samples, the report is usually ready within 5 business days.


Those occasional cases where it takes longer can be ascribed to our well-tested quality management system, which specifies numerous control mechanisms. Additionally, in the case of an exclusion, there is a double result requirement going back to the original samples, and this ensures that you get a reliable result.


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Which is needed - blood or saliva?


Both can be used, and both are just as reliable.


For reports for personal use, the simpler method of mouth swabs (“saliva samples”) is used. For this test, we send you the necessary swabs free of charge.


A blood sample enables us to carry out additional analyses. The currently valid guidelines for the preparation of parentage tests prescribe taking blood samples. However, these are actually needed only in very rare cases, which is why we usually work with saliva samples, particularly with children, even for court-recognized reports.


In special cases, other material can be used to provide a sample (e.g. hair, baby pacifier, toothbrush, cigarette butts, dried blood, bones, etc.). However, we only conduct tests like these after discussion and determination of their necessity. (We do not provide “secret test reports.”)


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Does the child have to be a certain age?


Testing is possible any time after birth.


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What happens with my personal data?


We work in accordance with strict data protection regulations. This applies in particular to the protection of personal data. Only the person who requested the test has access to the test results.


Only those DNA markers are examined, which contain no information regarding illnesses, appearance, or personal characteristics.


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Can the privately requested report be used in court?


Since the saliva samples for a report for private use are taken by the test persons themselves, such reports cannot be used in court. To be used in court, the minimum mandatory requirement is confirmation and written documentation of the test person’s identity at the time the sample is taken.


In addition, a court-recognized parentage test report places high demands on the test laboratory and the experts who work there. These include the establishment of a tested quality management system and compliance with the guidelines for preparation of parentage tests (set forth by the Bundesärztekammer (German Medical Association) on March 8, 2002). Our experts have the necessary qualifications and have been working for numerous courts in all of Germany for many years.


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Where can I get additional information?


Should you still have questions regarding the parentage test report, we are available to answer them at any time.


You can reach us by phone from Monday through Friday, between 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. at the number: (0) 7054 / 920660


Fax requests can be sent to the number: (0) 7054 / 920666

Our e-mail address is: lauk-breitling@t-online.de


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