Frequently Asked Questions
The decision to have a paternity test should not be taken lightly and you may have lots of questions. We urge you to consider all of the people involved and to decide whether this is the best course of action, particularly for any children in question.
Here’s a selection of the most frequently asked questions about DNA testing.
Do you offer Peace of Mind testing?
What is DNA Paternity Testing?
How does DNA testing work?
How long will the test take?
Is the DNA test accurate and can it be wrong?
When a mother, child and possible father are tested NorthGene’s results will either show he is not the father or normally provide proof of paternity with a confidence level of 99.99% and usually greater than 99.999%. We also carry out other types of relationship testing, for further details please contact our Customer Service team on 0191 2331414.
Is the service confidential?
How are the DNA samples taken?
For a Peace of Mind test you can take the samples yourself in your own home. We do suggest that all parties are present to witness the samples being taken. If you require a legal test then you will need to make an appointment to have your samples taken in our NHS clinic in the International Centre for Life, Newcastle or by an approved sampler, this is usually a GP. We can also usually arrange for a sample collector to attend a place of work or solicitors office. At that appointment a mouth swab will be rubbed gently and painlessly on the inside of your mouth to collect a sample of cheek cells. You will also need to complete a consent form (please remember to take 2 passport style photographs of each person being tested to the appointment) and these and the sample will then sent to NorthGene by the sample collector.
Complete all sections of the Sample Consent Form then date and sign where indicated.
For each person being tested fill out all of the details on a Sample Collection Envelope (in block capitals).
To take a DNA sample, open one of the packets containing two swabs and take out a single swab.
Rub and rotate the swab firmly against the inside of the persons cheek for 20 seconds, making sure to collect the cells and not just the saliva. Repeat this process with the second swab.
Put both swabs in the labelled Sample Collection Envelope for the person being tested and seal securely.
For each person being tested, repeat steps 3 to 5 (remember we need two swab samples for each person).
Put the form and all the sealed Sample Collection Envelopes in the prepaid / pre-addressed tamper proof bag and return to NorthGene.
How are the results analysed?
Are the tests acceptable evidence in a court of law?
Yes, NorthGene has been accredited by the Ministry of Justice as a body that may carry out parentage tests directed by the civil courts in England and Wales under section 20 of the Family Law Reform Act 1969.
NorthGene is commited to providing an exceptional high quality service throughout our testing portfolio and our ISO and Ministry of Justice accreditations are testament to this. A strict chain of cusody is followed throughout the sample taking and testing process to ensure accurate results at all times.
Will the results be accepted by the UK Home Office?
How do I confirm who is being tested?
From what age can a child be tested?
Can I have the test before the baby is born?
Can you take a sample from my child without the mother being informed?
Can I take a DNA sample from someone and run a DNA test without them knowing?
What about Quality Control and Standards?
Can other kinds of relationships be tested?
How can I register for the test?
Will my DNA sample be safe?
Is help available after I get my results?
If you have any questions about the results themselves please get in touch with one of our experienced Client Liaison Officers on 0191 233 1414 who will be happy to try and help where possible.