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Man Asks If It’s Wrong To Refuse To Take A DNA Test If It Means He Could Lose His Inheritance

With DNA technology, some things have been made a lot easier. Crimes that were previously unsolved are solved. Mysteries about genealogy can be investigated. And suspected parentage can be proven.

Of course, sometimes proven parentage can pose its own problems—like this Redditor who recently found out he might have a relative that wants to contest ownership of an estate.

The OP does not want to take a DNA test and feels like he shouldn’t have to—but he also wonders if it’s ethical to withhold that information.

“I (25m) am having a clash of morals and obligations and would like an outside perspective. When I was 13 my parents died and I was raised by my paternal grandparents. It was the easiest choice since they lived in the same area when my parents were alive and visited them frequently. I am my grandparents only grandchild as my aunt (43f) is child free so when they passed on they left me their house. The current total value of the house is around $500,000 and that’s lowballing the estimate, and it’s fully paid off so I basically have a really good head start in life although I could never imagine selling it.”

“Recently, I was approached by a man (38m), ‘John,’ claiming to be my grandfather’s son and would like a DNA test to verify it. I [was] shocked and didn’t believe him and told him to f-off because that would mean that my grandfather cheated on my grandmother. He also contacted my aunt and she recognized him as the neighbor’s kid who moved away years ago. Apparently my grandparents were friends with his parents but then one day there was a huge fight and the couple moved away.”

John said that his mom had an affair with the OP’s grandfather and consequently, his mom’s husband wanted nothing to do with him because he wasn’t sure if he was his biological son. After a DNA test proved that in fact John’s mother’s husband was not his father, that only left the OP’s grandfather.

John wants to know who his father is, so he wants the OP to take a DNA test. The OP was willing to until his girlfriend brought up the issue of the house:

“I did a quick check and if the DNA test proves that John is indeed my grandfather’s son he might be able to sue for a share of the estate. If it came down to it I would be forced to sell my home because there’s no way I could buy out even 1/3 of the share if John wanted it,” the OP said.

“I contacted John and said that I would be more than willing to do a DNA test but only under the condition that he sign away any rights or claims to the house if he’s proven to be my grandfather’s son via paperwork that my lawyer(s) will draw up. I didn’t hear from John for days but then got an angry call from a woman claiming to be his wife who called me greedy and selfish. That I couldn’t possibly know that pain of not knowing who my father is and that my grandfather owes John. I hung up on her and contacted a lawyer so far unless John can present enough evidence to create doubt he doesn’t have much of a case, especially since the possible father is already deceased. While I’m content with never giving John what he wants until he waives his rights, and my aunt won’t either, his wife has begun stalking me on social media and putting me on blast.”

What should the OP do?

“NTA. The wife and ‘John’ are definitely going to sue for the estate. The fact that he didn’t agree to draw up papers to ensure that doesn’t happen is suspicious. If he really just wanted to know who his biological father is, he would’ve agreed, you both would’ve taken the test, you guys would get the results, and that would’ve been the end of it. It’s suspicious that he didn’t opt to do that. You were right in getting that lawyer. NTA,” said FamiliarCheesecake29.

“Have your lawyer draw up a cease and desist letter to make John’s wife stop contacting you. Have the police contact her regarding harassment. You have proof that she is creating other accounts if you block her. You’ve named your terms in order to provide what they are asking for. You are under no obligation to surrender your DNA. Unfortunately, with the rise of several DNA ancestry kits, it’s possible that OP or Aunt have already provided a DNA sample. While not usable to prove paternity, directly, a close match on one of these websites might be the evidence John needs to have the courts compel a verifiable test. In this time, where scams are running rampant and seemingly everyone who asks for a favor has ulterior motives, it’s difficult to not be skeptical. You don’t owe him anything until he can show proof or at least something a bit more concrete than his word, as a stranger. You didn’t cause this situation, and you’re certainly not the AH for trying to protect yourself,” explained StellaLuna108.

“The next request is for your attorney to send the harassing wife a cease and desist or she will be sued for harassment. NTA. Do what you’ve got to do to protect your assets,” said Annalirra.

“NTA Pot meet kettle – they can’t call you greedy and say he only wants to know who his father was if they won’t sign something saying he won’t contest the will. He wants to know but he wants the money too. But if your grandfather did cheat and his mistress got pregnant he had to have known there was a possibility of him having another kid out there but he still left the house to you,” noted trilliumsummer.

“NTA. This all sounds extremely suspicious to me, partly because if John really did just want to know who his father is, he’d be happy to waive any rights to the inheritance, and partly because he’s only looking into this now, when he could have done it while your grandfather was still alive. You’re absolutely not under any ethical obligation to do a DNA test,” said WebbieVanderquack.

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