Japan’s Supreme Court Rules DNA Testing Not Enough to Sever Paternity

japanese flagIn a surprising ruling, the Supreme Court of Japan claimed DNA testing was not enough to break the bonds of paternity. It sited a 116-year-old law that states, “A child conceived by a wife during marriage shall be presumed to be the child of the husband.” The court also stated that the child’s well being should be placed above scientific facts.

The cases before the Supreme Court involved families where the wives had extramarital affairs that resulted in children. DNA testing was done and proved the husbands were not the fathers. Oddly enough, in two of the three cases, the husbands wanted to remain a legal parent of the children. The mothers were the ones who wanted to sever the paternity. In the third case, it was the husband who wanted to be severed.

Lower courts sided with science and said that DNA testing is enough to break those bonds. DNA testing is considered 99.99 percent accurate.

Now the Supreme Court has spoken and sided with the outdated notion of “presumed” paternity. Two of the five justices disagreed with the ruling and some are calling for a reevaluation of the 116-year-old law.