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Within the first six months of 2016 almost 400,000 people arrived in Germany after fleeing from their home country. While some are able to escape with their family members, many have to leave them behind. However, after arriving in Germany and being recognized as a refugee, there are options to reunite your family. This process involves proving that you are related to the person outside Germany, which can be accomplished via DNA-analysis. Here, we gathered important information regarding the process of family reunion for refugees in Germany.

Family reunion includes both the possible relocation of spouses, as well as minors. Applications for family reunion can be submitted by officially accepted refugees or holders of the EU Blue Card while minors fleeing alone are able to initiate the process with the help of their legal guardian. In case of subsidiary protection, the possibility to reunite your family is currently limited.

The German embassies in your home country are the central contact partner for your family members. Additionally, the test kits will be safely send to the embassy for the sampling process.

deoxyribonucleic acid – The backbone of our genetic information consists of four different building blocks and when condensed forms the so-called chromosomes. Chromosomes contain our genes in the coding regions and are surrounded by non-coding regions. The sequence of the building blocks determines the phenotype the genes and some regions contain short repeating regions – short tandem repeats. These areas are highly variable between individuals and are therefore used in both paternity as well as family line of decent tests.

picture of DNA helix

group of smiling children

Family reunion – For the reunion of families in Germany a certificate regarding their relation status is often required. This documentation can for example be achieved via DNA testing of the family members. These genetic traits are inherited and the children’s DNA contains a mixture of both the father’s as well as the mother’s characteristic markers. Non-invasive oral cavity swabs are used to collect material used for the test and the analysis reveals whether the subjects are related. The results are provided in the form of certified documents for the embassy.