Why do I need a DNA test?
There are many reasons people need DNA testing. The important thing is getting you the answer to your family relationship question as quickly as possible. DNA testing is used for many reasons, including:
Who is tested in a paternity test?
- Questions about parentage
- Completion of the Acknowledgement or Affidavit of Paternity
- Child support or child custody issues
- Social Security or Military child survivor benefits if the alleged father is deceased
- Estate and Inheritance claims
- Immigration paperwork
- Adoption process or surrogate parent biological confirmation
- Protecting Native American tribal enrollment
- Providing Infidelity confirmation
Usually the mother, child and alleged father should all be tested. The mother contributed one-half of her DNA to the child and the remaining DNA must then match the alleged father. It is possible to obtain accurate results without mother's sample if she is not available for testing.
How accurate are DNA tests?
DNA test results provided by Alabama MedScreen are extremely accurate. We routinely release test results with a probability of paternity of 99.9999% or higher; or, 100% probability in cases which exclude the alleged father. In addition we test each DNA sample twice, following the highest standards in quality control which is unprecedented in the DNA testing industry.
What is used for a DNA test sample?
Alabama MedScreen uses a cotton-tipped swab, called a "buccal cheek swab". The DNA sample is collected by swabbing the inside cheek of the mouth. It is painless and non-invasive, and the results are just as accurate as blood samples. For certain kinds of DNA tests, like those for infidelity, other biological samples are acceptable including drops of blood or other genetic material found on an item of clothing.
Can tested parties live in different cities?
Through one of our 230 affiliated offices nationwide, Alabama MedScreen will make arrangements for all parties' samples to be collected in the place that is most convenient to them. All DNA test samples are coordinated by your assigned case manager if they are collected in different locations.
When will I receive my paternity test results?
After your DNA samples are collected it typically takes 48 hours to report the DNA test results back to you. Next-day service is also available for a small additional cost. Please note that test results will not be released until the test fee has been paid in full.
Can I use Alabama MedScreen's test results in court?
Yes, you can. The report we provide from our Legally-Admissible DNA Test is evidence that proves or disproves paternity if sample collections are performed using the chain-of-custody process. If your DNA sample is not collected by a disinterested third party (the Chain of Custody process) then the DNA test results cannot be used as evidence in court.
How much will my DNA test cost?
Our standard alleged father, mother, and child test is $375.00. However you may wish to call our office and speak with a knowledgeable case manager who will confidentially discuss your specific situation with you and advise which DNA test is appropriate for your situation. Other fees may apply if there are more than three persons tested or there are extenuating circumstances.
How can I pay for my DNA test?
You may pay for your DNA test with cash, a personal check, cashier's check, a money order or through Paypal (VISA, MasterCard, Discover or American Express). DNA test results are not issued until the test fee has been paid in full. We will work with you on a payment plan that you can afford to make.
Does Alabama MedScreen offer a payment plan?
Yes, your confidential case manager will be able to discuss all payment options with you.
How do I make an appointment for my DNA test?
Please contact us at (205) 823-9648 to speak with a case manager who will schedule and coordinate your DNA sample collection appointment or you may correspond by e-mail with us at firstname.lastname@example.org
What should I bring to my Legal DNA sample collection appointment?
When you come to the DNA sample collection appointment you will be need to do the following in order to meet the Chain of Custody requirements:
Is the mother's DNA sample required for a paternity test?
- Present government-issued identification for adults being tested
- Present identification for minors such as a birth certificate or social security card
- You will be photographed and fingerprinted
- You must complete a Client Identification and Consent Form (the minor's consent form should be signed by the child's legal guardian)
- Please make sure that adults have the required government-issued identification and that you remember to bring a birth certificate or social security card for your minor child.
No. If the mother is not available to participate we can perform a motherless paternity test at no additional charge. Results from a motherless DNA paternity test are just as accurate as those of a standard paternity test.
Is it a problem if there are two possible fathers and they are related?
If two possible fathers are related as full brothers or father and son, they may share many of the DNA markers used in paternity testing. This means that if proper precautions are not taken, both men could test positive as the child's biological father. DNA testing will determine paternity in a case involving related alleged fathers but we must be aware of the situation before the testing process begins.
Alabama MedScreen offers two options for cases involving alleged fathers who are related:
•Option 1: Test both alleged fathers, the child, and the mother at the same time. By comparing both alleged fathers' DNA profiles with the child's DNA profile, our expert laboratory staff can achieve accurate and conclusive test results. There is an added fee for the additional alleged father.
•Option 2: Test one alleged father with extended analysis. This option can be taken when only one of the alleged fathers is available for testing. To produce a conclusive result, we must perform extended testing and statistical analysis. There is an additional fee for the extended testing and analysis.
Can I do a paternity test before the baby is born?
Yes you can if the mother is between 10 and 24 weeks pregnant. An OB-GYN can collect a DNA sample from the developing child through either chorionic villi sampling (10-13 weeks) or amniocentesis (14-24 weeks). The baby's prenatal sample can then compared against the mother's and alleged father's DNA samples which are collected using the buccal (cheek) swabbing method. There will be additional fee involved in the collection of the baby's DNA sample and you need to check with your doctor regarding this additional fee.
Is there a DNA sample collection location near me?
Yes, we have a beautiful collection facility right here in Birmingham on Lorna Road. We also have an extensive network of DNA sample collection locations and service center locations. When you contact us at the number below a dedicated case manager will schedule a local appointment that is convenient for all of the tested parties. Same day appointments are available but we will always schedule your DNA sample collection appointment at a time and place that works best for you.
Will my DNA test results be legally defensible?
Alabama MedScreen strictly adheres to the chain of custody process for legal DNA paternity testing. This makes our test results legally defensible. Legal DNA test results are used for legal purposes such as child custody, child support, immigration, Social Security benefit claims, inheritance claims, and for other situations like Native American tribal enrollment.
Can DNA test results be used to obtain child support?
Alabama MedScreen's Legal DNA paternity test follows a strict chain of custody process, which makes our DNA test results defensible in courts and other government agencies. Legal DNA test results are routinely used to prove paternity and obtain child support.
What does "chain of custody process" mean?
The chain of custody process is what makes the paternity test results legally defensible in courts and other government agencies. There are three main points in a chain of custody process:
- The tested parties are properly identified when their samples are collected. (Their government-issued IDs are verified and photocopied, and the individuals are photographed and thumbprinted.)
- The samples are collected by a neutral third party-someone who has no personal interest in the outcome of the test (e.g., a hospital, clinic, or laboratory staff person).
- The samples are tamper-taped, securely packaged at the collection site, and carefully inspected upon receipt for any evidence of tampering.
- When these three requirements are satisfied and documented, the paternity test results are legally defensible. This means that you can use them for legal purposes like child custody, child support, immigration and Native American tribal enrollment.
Who is entitled to receive the DNA paternity test results?
The adult tested parties that participated in the test and or any legal guardian that signed on behalf of a minor is entitled to recieve DNA paternity test results. Anyone outside of the tested parties or legal guardian can ONLY get results or information with a signed consent from the tested parties or legal guardian.
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(800) 410-4888 outside of Metro Birmingham
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