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Paternity DNA Tests: How Do They Work and How Accurate are They?

DNA or Deoxyribonucleic Acid is the genetic material inherited from the father and mother. Paternity relates to “fatherhood”. So, a DNA paternity test is where the father’s DNA is compared with the child’s DNA to confirm whether that man is the biological father of the alleged child.

Below are some things you need to consider before conducting paternity DNA testing.

What is the accuracy of paternity DNA tests?

paternity DNA test guarantees a nearly 100% accurate result to help determine if a person is the biological father of another person. This test requires taking cheek swabs or blood samples from both individuals. The test can be done even during pregnancy.

Why is DNA paternity testing important to do?

Paternity DNA testing is performed for both legal and personal reasons.

Here are some reasons you may want a paternity test:

  • Getting legal rights for child custody,
  • Getting child support
  • Establishing relationship to get social security survivors benefit for the child
  • Getting peace of mind, knowing whether or not the person is the father of the child

How does the DNA paternity test work?

There are two equally effective methods for DNA paternity testing:

  • Cheek swabs: The cheek cells of the child and the potential father are collected with a swab. Then these swab samples are sent to the designated lab for testing
  • Blood tests: The blood samples of the pregnant mother and the cheek swabs of the alleged father are collected. Then these samples are sent for laboratory analysis.

How does the pre-natal paternity test work?

Pre-natal paternity DNA testing gives the most accurate results during pregnancy, comparable to the DNA tests performed after the baby’s birth.

Here are the three such test methods performed while the mother is pregnant:

  • Non-invasive Prenatal Paternity Test: Here, the mother’s blood sample is collected (after the 9th week of pregnancy) and the fetal DNA is extracted from the mother’s blood. The fetal DNA is compared with the DNA from the alleged father’s cheek swab.
  • Chorionic Villus Sampling: A tissue sample is collected from the mother’s placenta. Then the DNA extracted from the sample is compared with the DNA from the alleged father’s cheek swab. CVS is typically performed between the 10th and 13th week of the pregnancy.
  • Amniocentesis: A long, thin needle is inserted into the mother’s abdomen to collect amniotic fluid. Then the child’s DNA is compared with the alleged father’s DNA. This test is taken between the 15th and 20th week of pregnancy.

Note: Both CVS and Amniocentesis poses significant risks to the fetus and your physician must approve and obtain the samples for these procedures.

How much does a DNA paternity test cost?

A DNA paternity test will typically cost between $225 to $2000, depending on the service you need. Legal and pre-natal paternity tests are more expensive; however the information and peace-of-mind may be worth the cost. These types of tests are not typically covered under health insurance.

What is the usual time for delivery of paternity DNA test reports?

The delivery time for lab results may vary depending upon which laboratory service you choose. It also depends on how fast the collected sample is sent to the laboratory and tested.

Any decent DNA lab confirms the test results within two to three business days; it rarely takes longer than that. Some labs offer same-day test report delivery with an additional fee. Many reputed DNA testing centers upload results on a secure website for easy and quick access.

However, note that pre-natal DNA paternity tests like Amniocentesis and CVS (Chorionic Villus Sampling) can take a week or so to provide accurate prenatal DNA test results.

When your baby’s paternity is questioned by society, a DNA paternity test helps you answer it. Your chosen DNA testing center/lab assists you with the testing method best for your situation.

But whichever DNA lab service you choose for at-home or medical test, make sure the lab is AABB (American Association of Blood Banks) authorized. The test results released by an AABB-accredited laboratory meet solid standards for testing and maintaining accuracy.

Accurate C&S Services, Inc. partners with an AABB (American Association of Blood Banks) accredited lab. We deliver paternity test results typically available within 2 business days.

For more details about our various DNA testing services, call us at 866-DNA-2018