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Cheat in a paternity test: is it possible?

Posted on | November 1, 2010 | Comments Off

If you have ever pondered whether it is possible to cheat in a paternity DNA test the answer is “Yes”. Whilst cheating is highly immoral and unethical people will still nevertheless try and do it. Clearly, these people have little regard for ethics. When it comes to paternity DNA testing however, rest assured that cheaters do not prosper and moreover, there are serious legal consequences for those who try to cheat and scheme to alter a paternity test result.

If you are going to do an at home test you will be responsible for collecting your own samples and sending them back for testing. Here is where there is room for cheating. If testing is not carried out in such a way so as to witness each other swabbing then it is simple for someone to do any of the following:

• Ask a friend to swab their mouth and pass this swab off as one belonging to one of the participants required for the test.
• Use the same swab for more than one person thereby contaminating the DNA sample.
• Swabbing a pet
• Switching the envelopes. Your paternity testing kit will contain colored swabs in colored envelopes. One envelope for the mother, one for the alleged father and one for the child. Sometime people might deliberately place the mother’s swabs in the father’s envelopes or perhaps the other way around.

If you fully trust everyone taking part in the test then you need not worry. However, if you think someone might cheat you might either want to sit down all together in a room and watch each other taking DNA samples- in this way you are all acting as witnesses one to the other.

You can on the other hand, get a legal DNA test. This test is done following a certain procedure which makes it impossible to cheat. However, the test is more expensive as it normally used when one wishes to take paternity matters to court and thus, if you simply wanted a peace of mind paternity test this test is not really worth doing.

Will the laboratory detect cheating in a paternity test?

Yes, certainly, labs have every secure and effective control measures to ensure no switching of swabs has taken place or that there has been no contamination of DNA. However, by this time, the lab will have started the analysis; they will stop the testing and will ask for new samples to be sent.  To cheating in a paternity test is thus, really not worth the time and costs.

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