Legal Paternity Testing
Legal DNA tests are conducted by an AABB accredited DNA laboratory and are admissible in courts in all US states. Legal DNA tests are also accepted by government agencies such as the Social Security Administration, the United States Passport agency and other such government offices. Legal DNA tests are conducted by certified DNA collectors who will fill out legal paperwork and perform the collection.
Collectors will begin by verifying the identities of the donors. The collector will view and photocopy government issued photo identification. Some children may not have a photo id. The collector should be provided with a birth certificate, exceptions apply. The collector will take a photo of the participants. This photo must be suitable for identification.
Collectors will begin by verifying the identities of the donors. The collector will view and photocopy government issued photo identification. Some children may not have a photo id. The collector should be provided with a birth certificate. (Some exceptions apply.) The collector will take a photo of the participants. This photo must be suitable for identification.
The collector will give the donors a copy of the consent to DNA testing. The collector will answer any questions the donors may have about what they are consenting to. The donors or their legal guardian will sign the DNA consent form. By signing, the donors are agreeing that they understand and agree to the terms of service.
Chain of Custody
The collector will fill out a form that will stay with the samples at all times. This document, the chain of custody, indicates who has possession of the DNA samples and when. The chain of custody is used to ensure DNA samples are not switched or tampered with.
Paternity Chain of Custody Forms include:
- Full Legal Names of donors (mother, child and alleged father)
- Date of Birth of donors
- Race/Ethnicity of donors
- Signatures of informed consent
- Printed Name of collector
- Signature of collector
- Date of sample collection
- Address of sample collection
DNA samples are placed in paper envelopes. Each envelope is labeled with the name of the donor. Some envelopes will have more information.
Sample Collection Procedures
DNA sample collectors are non-interested third party persons. This means that they have no interest in the outcome of the test. For this reason samples cannot be collected by friends, family members, co-workers etc. Legal DNA sample collections should be performed at a clinic or by a mobile collector who is trained in proper DNA sample handling.
While wearing gloves the DNA sample collector will remove one sterile swab from it's wrapper. The DNA collector will then rub the swab on the inside cheek of the donor for more than 30 seconds. The DNA collector is removing skin from the inside of the donor's mouth. Your skin contains DNA. Your skin naturally sheds and regrows very quickly. The collector is collecting the skin that you would naturally shed. This is not a saliva test.
After completing the process with the first swab the collector places the swab into the previously labeled envelope. The DNA collector repeats the process until three or more swabs are collected.
The DNA collector repeats the process for each person being tested.
The paperwork and collection procedures listed above are required for legal DNA testing.
These guidelines ensure that the persons whose names are listed on the DNA report, are in fact the persons who the DNA samples are collected from.
At Home Legal DNA Tests
Some companies sell legal DNA tests that you cannot collect at home. These DNA tests are NOT legal and iTestDNA asks that you avoid such scams. If for any reason a judge or government official were to question the validity of those DNA test results they would be found to be fraudulent. Fraud is illegal. Please do not waste your time or money with the At Home Legal DNA Test.