How Long Does a DNA Paternity Test Take

Waiting for results for a potentially life-changing test is stressful. Read on to discover how long does a paternity test take here.

Sometimes waiting for a DNA paternity test can be overwhelming. After all, the results of this test could significantly change your life.

In the United States, specialists conduct about 300,000 paternity tests every year. So if the paternity test makes you restless, it helps to remember you’re not alone.

This piece will elaborate on “how long does a paternity test take?” But first, let’s take a look at the standard procedure for a DNA paternity test.

The Paternity Test Procedure

The paternity test is relatively simple for a potential life-changing test. This test conclusively establishes whether someone is the biological father of a particular child.

The test involves collecting DNA samples from both the child and the potential father. It is so far the most accurate testing method for identifying someone’s father. This accuracy ascribes to DNA, which is a unique genetic fingerprint.

When the baby is conceived, the mother and father contribute fifty-fifty to the child’s DNA. When a specialist analyses both the potential father’s and child’s DNA, they can tell whether the alleged father is the biological dad.

Most of the body cells contain DNA. However, blood and the buccal cells which are found in the inside of our cheeks give the best results.

How Long Does a Paternity Test Take?

There’s no direct answer to this question. Generally, the time it takes for the results of a paternity test depends on the lab where the test happens.

A well-equipped lab can have the test results out in two to three business days. However, few labs have the technology and staff to give such quick results. In other labs, the results may take up to 12 weeks to come out.

Being anxious for twelve whole weeks isn’t such a good thing. But if you settle for cheaper labs, late results are something you should expect.

A court-ordered DNA test may take a bit longer. This delay is because there’s a lot of procedures involved before the actual test. 

You must fill out a ton of paperwork and wait for the court order from the judge. After the judge’s order, you can proceed to the lab, where you have to fill additional paperwork for the actual test to begin.

Some companies have home DNA paternity testing, which is very convenient.  The results are just as accurate as any other lab test, but you don’t have to travel for the test. 

These home tests, however, cannot hold up in court. They cannot be valid for any legal proceedings. Aside from court-ordered tests, home DNA testing is a great alternative to lab tests.

Be Careful With Some Labs

Before settling on a lab for DNA testing, do your homework on the lab. It is common for labs to offer very quick results that may not be so accurate.

All in all, the answer to how long does a paternity test take depends on the lab in question. However, the shortest time should be two days or three; anything lesser is suspicious. A standard DNA paternity test should not take more than 12 weeks.

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