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FDDU Frequently Asked Questions

DNA – Federal DNA Database Unit (FDDU) Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions
DNA—Federal DNA Database Unit (FDDU)

How can I find out if someone is in the database?

Please fill out a Sample Status Request form. The FDDU can mail you the result of your request, or if you list an e-mail address, e-mail you the result of your request.

How can I order Buccal Collection Kits? How much do they cost?   

Please fill out a Buccal Collection Kit Re-order form. FDDU provides the collection kits free of charge to the agency.

I received a Missing Information Notification, how do I respond?

Please fill out the Missing Information Notification form and fax it to the FDDU at (703) 632-7620. Please feel free to call the main FDDU line at (703) 632-7529 with any questions or concerns.

I received a Rejection Notification. What does this mean?

The sample provided to the FDDU could not be accepted due to the reason listed in the Rejection Notification. Please submit a completely new sample for the offender to the FDDU. If the individual is out of custody, convicted and at a federal BOP, or being monitored by a Probation District, please capture that information on the form you received along with the location of the individual, if applicable, and return the form to the FDDU at fax number (703) 632-7620.

What does it mean when my sample submission gets rejected?

The DNA sample that you submitted could not be accepted by FDDU and will not be uploaded to CODIS for the reason stated in the notification that you received. A new sample and FD-936 form will need to be sent to FDDU for the offender. 

What do I do when my sample submission gets rejected?

A new sample and FD-936 form will need to be sent to FDDU for the offender. This includes the FD-936 form, the DNA collection cards, as well as capturing the fingerprints on the FD-936.

When resubmitting my DNA sample, do I just send in the part of the kit that had the error (just the DNA sample or just the fingerprints)?

No. Please submit an entirely new DNA collection kit as if you were collecting from the offender for the first time, with all the parts provided in the kit. Otherwise, it will be rejected again. This includes the FD-936 form, the DNA collection cards, as well as capturing the fingerprints on the FD-936.

My sample rejection notification says the rejection reason is “No name or unique identifier on DNA sample.” What does that mean?

The DNA collection card was not labeled with the offender’s name. You must pull out the white DNA cards out of the blue collection devices to see that there is a line on the DNA cards labeled “Offender name.” Write the offender’s name here as it is described on the FD-936. The offender name on the DNA collection card and the FD-936 must be the same or the sample will not be accepted by FDDU.

If my sample got rejected for “No name or unique identifier on DNA sample,”

      • Can you just write the name in for me? No. FDDU did not collect the sample and cannot ensure the integrity of the sample as a result. This is the responsibility of the individual who collected the DNA sample of the offender at the time of collection.
      • Can you send it back to me so that I can fill it in? No. FDDU cannot return samples to agencies and/or collectors for this purpose.
      • “I can assure you that was the only kit I did that day and that DNA sample belongs to that individual.” FDDU cannot ensure the integrity of the sample that is not properly labeled because we did not collect it. It is imperative that DNA collection cards are properly labeled with the offender’s name and that this is the same as that captured on the FD-936. This should be performed by the collector during the time of collection. Without this information, FDDU cannot be certain which offender the sample might have come from.

        What do I do if the individual is no longer in my custody or at my facility?

        If this individual is awaiting trial, you may collect the sample at a later date. If this individual is under someone else’s custody, is at a BOP facility, or has been released from federal custody, capture this information about the offender’s status on the rejection notice and fax it to FDDU at (703) 632-7620.

        If I am from a BOP and/or Probation District, how do I fill out the top of the FD-936 form with the revision date 01-06-2009?

        Please put your BOP facility code and DNA Sequence Number or Probation District code only if the offender is a convicted offender. If the offender is pre-trial and facing criminal charges, also check the Federal Arresting Agency box because you are also acting as the arresting agency in this case. Only check the Federal Detaining Agency box if the offender is a non-United States person and being detained under the authority of the U.S. but not facing any criminal charges.

        If I am using the FD-936 form with revision date 01-06-2009, which box do I check if the offender is facing criminal and immigration charges?

        Please check the Federal Arresting Agency box.

        Can I use a stamp or sticker for the Submitting Agency Contact Information section?

        Yes, but be sure that the stamp or sticker produces information that is readable.

        Can I make copies of the FD-936 in order to pre-fill out the forms?

        No. It is imperative to fill out the FD-936 form with the offender’s information during the time of collection to ensure incorrect information is not transcribed, samples are not linked incorrectly to a FD-936 from a different offender than was sampled, or vice versa. It is important that the FD-936 form is filled out legibly with black or blue ink and within the boxes so it can be interpreted by our scanning system. The new buccal collection kits have barcodes on the collection devices and the FD-936 form specific to each kit. It is imperative that these components not be intermixed between kits. When the kit is returned to FDDU, the barcodes on the collection devices must match those on the FD-936 or the sample will be rejected.

        I took the sample for case work comparison but used your kit and sent it to you. Can I get the sample back? What are my options?

        FDDU cannot return your sample to the submitting agency, as submissions to the unit are property of the FDDU. Samples submitted to FDDU are not used for casework processing because they do not possess a chain of custody with them, making them inadmissible in court. Because of this, FDDU samples cannot be transferred to the casework unit for processing as the Rules of Evidence were not properly followed.   

        I am from a state facility, and I received a letter from BOP telling me to collect DNA from several individuals. They have provided your collection kit but I do not know what to do.

        Please call the POC from BOP that sent you the letter and get the appropriate BOP Facility Code and DNA Sequence number for the offenders to be sampled so that it can be provided on the FD-936 form. Please see the Buccal Collection Kit Information that provides information on how the collection kit is utilized. Please call us with any questions on the FDDU main line at (703) 632-7529.

        What are the main mistakes that people make, and how can I avoid them?

          1. Please make sure to put the offender’s name on the DNA collection card as it written on the FD-936 form. You will have to remove the DNA collection card from the blue collection device to be able to write the offender’s name. For a thorough description on how to properly utilize the Buccal Collection kit, see the New Buccal Collection Kit Information document.
          2. Be sure to notate in section 4 of the FD-936 form with revision date 08-05-2011, the qualifying reason for DNA collection. If using the FD-936 form with revision date 01-06-2009, if the offender is facing criminal charges, please check the Federal Arresting Agency box, and if the offender is a non-U.S. person facing immigration charges or being Federally detained, please check the Federal Detaining Agency box. Please see the definitions of a Convicted Offender, Arrestee, and Detainee on the new New Buccal Collection Kit Information document.
          3. Please properly seal the outside of the return envelope of the collection kit. It is imperative that the seal is completely closed.
          4. Please provide all components of the kit including the FD-936 (filled out properly), the DNA collection cards properly labeled with offender’s name as they appear on the FD-936, and fingerprints captured on the FD-936 from the right and left index finger of the offender.