For a Pennsylvania resident, getting a DNA test can be a useful step toward determining parentage. During the DNA test process, a person’s mouth or cheek will be swabbed for cells. Once the cells are collected, the chain of custody of those cells is tracked meticulously. This helps to ensure that the results are accurate, and samples are tested twice before they are certified to further ensure accuracy.
On average, a DNA test is 99.99999 percent accurate, which is why one is generally ordered to find out who a child’s father may be. If it is to be used as part of a court proceeding, the sample must be taken at a hospital or other approved medical facility. However, a DNA test is not the only way in which parentage may be determined. In some cases, the father may voluntarily acknowledge that he is the father of the child.
A judge may also declare a man to be the father of a child, and if the parents are married, the mother’s husband is generally considered the father by default. Once an individual has been determined to be a baby’s father, he will likely be ordered to pay child support. In addition, that person may also get visitation or custody rights to the child.
Resolving issues such as child support can be complicated. Therefore, it may be a good idea to talk to an attorney about how best to settle those matters. An attorney may be able to ask a judge to order a DNA test or take other steps to increase the odds that a custodial parent gets the support necessary to raise a child on his or her own.