How To Get a Paternity Test

A paternity test is a virtually foolproof method to determine fatherhood.  Here's how to get a paternity test.

Step 1

Look for a location that does paternity testing. A paternity test is not hard to get. Many places offer paternity tests for very little money. Your family doctor or physician can probably give you a few names of reputable paternity clinics. Or a quick search of the Internet should also uncover several laboratory facilities that can do the paternity test for you.

Step 2

Get the potential dads to agree to the test. After you have found a place that is willing to do the paternity test for you, you will need to talk to the man (or men) you want to do the paternity test on. Mom, baby and dad(s) all need to go to the paternity clinic to have their DNA tested. If a guy is reluctant to go, let him know that it may get him off the hook for child support if the test proves he's not the dad. If he still won't go, you can talk to a lawyer about having a paternity test ordered by a court.

Step 3

Give blood. The easiest form for each party to give a DNA sample for paternity testing is to give blood. But if needles aren't your thing, you can also have a cheek swab done. Both are relatively painless, and will be over within a few seconds.

Step 4

Be patient.  You can't get the results from a paternity test overnight. It will take a few weeks, at least. Once the results of the paternity test are in, the facility will call you to come in to learn the results of the paternity test. (Few will give the information over the phone.) When you do learn the results of the paternity test, keep in mind that these test results are usually 99% accurate. So the result you get is most likely the right one.

Step 5

Move forward. Depending on the results of your paternity test, you may need to move in a few different directions. If you are disappointed by the paternity test results, you may want to consider counseling for both you and your child. This is certainly a good idea for older children who grew up believing one man was their father only to find out that that was not the case. On the other hand, if you confirm the fatherhood of your children through a paternity test, you should be able to breathe a sigh of relief. Go after child support if you need to. Or work with the father to come to an agreement about the parenting of the child. Whatever you do, ensure that you deal with the results of a paternity test at your own pace. Prepare for the days following a paternity test to be difficult and look beyond these trying times to the future of you and your child, no matter who the father may be.


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