Can a person with no capacity have a Paternity test?
31 October 2019 by Andrea Godfrey
A recent decision of the Court of Protection is that of Bagguley v E  EWCOP 49. The Court of Protection is a Court which specialises in the protection of the interests of people who cannot make certain decisions themselves as they lack mental capacity.
This case concerned a gentleman (“E”) who was 76 years old and had dementia and it was unlikely that he would live for long. He had a Lasting Power of Attorney and his attorney (Mr Bagguley) had applied to Court to ask permission for buccal cell samples to be taken from P.
The reason why was so that they could undertake DNA testing to ascertain whether or not he was the father of 3 particular children. He had already completed paternity tests but the results were unclear and this could have left the children not knowing whether E was their biological father and also cause issues regarding potential inheritance. E’s wishes and feelings where considered and it was stated that if E had capacity, he would have told others what the results were in any event.
The court ruled that it was in the E’s best interests for the samples to be taken. Their main reasoning was that he had had the paternity test before and he would have wanted the new tests done. The Court granted the Application.
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