DNA Provides Legal Paternity Testing Today

By Benedict Perez

Most of us today take for granted that paternity testing can be proved through scientific means. This has not always been true. There once was a time when a lie could not be proven false or true and eyewitnesses motivated by high moral standings or in the depths of personally guided misspeaking were taken as gospel truth.

Legal Paternity Testing The Old Way

The most popular way for determining paternity was a judge standing a child (sitting or lying) next to an accused father, taking a good hard look and then making a determination. The coincidental fact that each person may have the same hair and eye color, the same shaped face and other similar facial or body characteristics and may not necessarily be related to escape the entire equation. In fact, it was only a little more than 100 years ago that person's eye color was used by judges as a determining factor.

Modern Legal Paternity Testing

Thankfully those outdated methods of determining legal paternity are nothing more than a humorous look at the past. DNA testing has become the benchmark method for all legal proclamations when it comes to paternity issues. DNA testing itself has evolved over the years and it is a much simpler process than it once was. Legal paternity testing today is easy to do and accurate beyond dispute.

Many Tests Conducted Annually

Each year, more than 200,000 DNA tests are conducted by legal institutions and governments meeting the information to sort out child-support, welfare and inheritance issues. Few people neither realize nor are willing to conduct their own at-home legal paternity test.

Testing For Legal Paternity At Home

You can do your own legal paternity testing as long as it is a test that is accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks. These at home tests are accurate to 99.99999 percent.

Highly Accurate Results

At home legal paternity testing is so accurate that odds are one in one million you will get a wrong result. Most labs that do DNA legal paternity tests usually provide you with the kit for free. You pay after you collect the samples and return them for testing.

Collecting DNA

When collecting DNA from a baby, it is not practical to get a blood sample so using a mouth swab to collect DNA is acceptable and legal. To do this, gently massage the cheeks first to loosen cells so you can gather them with the swab. Buccal testing can be done on older children and adults as well.

Mom's DNA Not Needed

DNA testing is accurate even without comparing it to the mother's DNA. Legal paternity testing requires at least sixteen genetic markers to match up between father and child. Since the child receives half of these markers from his father, the father's DNA is all that is required for comparison against the child's DNA. Labs that specialize in legal paternity issues usually return results within ten days and charge around $300 for a basic test.

How else is a DNA test used?

DNA can determine familial relationships beyond father and child. Testing can confirm relationships between siblings, cousins, and grandparents. DNA testing can determine if twins are fraternal or identical. Genetic testing can also be used for genealogy purposes to determine one's ancestral origin. DNA can provide a legal basis for verifying Native American ancestry to make one eligible for government programs.

DNA legal paternity testing can even help put nervous parents at ease if they have suspicions their child was switched at the hospital. DNA testing has come a long way and has become the standard for determining legal paternity as well as being useful for many other applications. - 32385

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