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  Home -> Paternity Testing FAQs -> Sample Collection

Sample Collection

  1. Do you have a sample collection location near me?
  2. What happens if the tested parties live in different cities or states?
  3. What types of samples do you use?
  4. How soon can I have my sample collected?
  5. What do I need to bring to the appointment?
  6. What will happen at the sample collection appointment?
  7. Is there a minimum age for collecting a DNA sample?
  8. Do buccal swabs produce the same results as blood samples?

 




  1. Do you have a sample collection location near me?

  2. We have an extensive network of sample collection sites that covers all U.S. states and Canadian provinces. We also have numerous collection sites in other countries around the world. When you call, one of our case managers will search our databases to find local appointments that are convenient for all the tested parties. We will schedule your appointment at the time and place that work best for you.

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  3. What happens if the tested parties live in different cities or states?

  4. We can schedule separate appointments for any or all of the participants in a paternity test. We have thousands of collection sites all over the United States and Canada, and we can usually schedule a convenient appointment close to your work or home.

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  5. What types of samples do you use?

  6. Most of the time, the samples we test are buccal swabs, or cheek swabs. Buccal swabbing is a quick and painless procedure that involves rubbing a cotton-like swab against the inside of the patient’s cheek.

    We can test a number of other types of samples as well.


    In a prenatal paternity test, for example, we will examine a DNA sample collected from the developing child through chorionic villi sampling or amniocentesis.
    In a case involving a deceased individual, we can test a blood or tissue sample that has been stored at the coroner’s or medical examiner’s office. However, we first need to perform a viability test on the sample to make sure it contains sufficient DNA for testing.

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  7. How soon can I have my sample collected?

  8. Because we have sample collection sites all over the United States and Canada, we will be able to schedule an appointment for you quickly—often on the same day that you call. Please call 1-800-613-5768 to set up your case right away.

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  9. What do I need to bring to the appointment?

  10. All adult test participants must bring a valid government-issued ID—such as a driver’s license, state ID, military ID, or passport—to the sample collection appointment. For minors, a birth certificate, Social Security card, or hospital birth record is sufficient. In addition, the child’s legal custodian will have to sign a consent form allowing the minor to be tested.

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  11. What will happen at the sample collection appointment?

  12. When you arrive at your appointment, you will need to present proper identification, which the sample collector will verify and photocopy. You will also have your photograph and thumbprint taken. These three elements are required by the chain of custody procedure, which makes your test results legally defensible.

    After you are properly identified, you will need to sign a form giving your consent for the test. If you are the legal custodian of a tested minor, you will have to sign the form on behalf of the child.

    The collector will collect your DNA samples using simple buccal swabs—cotton-like swabs that he or she will rub against the inside of your cheek to gather loose cheek cells. The collector will then send all the samples to our laboratory.

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  13. Is there a minimum age for collecting a DNA sample?

  14. No. Because DNA is set at conception and generally does not change, a paternity test can be performed on a person of any age—even on a sample from an unborn child (through prenatal testing). At birth, blood from the umbilical cord can be taken for use as a DNA sample source, or a buccal swab can be collected from the newborn.

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  15. Do buccal swabs produce the same results as blood samples?

  16. Yes. Buccal swab samples contain the same DNA as blood samples and will therefore produce the same paternity test results. Buccal swabbing is our primary sample collection method because it is a simple and painless procedure. In addition, buccal swabs are particularly preferable over blood samples for persons who have had recent blood transfusions or bone marrow transplants—their blood samples may contain DNA from the donors.

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