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Frequently asked questions

What type of sample is required?
We will need a sample of cheek cells from the mother, child and possible father in order to extract the DNA for testing. This is a very simple process and a doctor or nurse (the sampler) will take the sample.
 
How is the sample taken?
The sampler will gently rub a small swab (which looks like a small cotton bud on a stick) around the inside of your mouth. This procedure should be painless and not cause concern. He/she will then ask you to complete and sign some simple identification documentation.
 
Who takes the sample?
You can choose to ask your own GP or any other registered medical professional (doctor or nurse within a doctor’s practice) to take the sample. Alternatively you can select a sampler in your local area from
a list that we will send to you when you register your case with us. Please note that doctors on this list are not endorsed by LGC and their names and addresses are sent for your convenience only.
 
Why does it have to be a doctor/nurse?
In order to comply with current legislation it is necessary for a medically qualified person (doctor or their practice nurse) to take the samples and to complete the necessary paperwork.
 
Does everyone have to go to the same sampler and/or at the same time?
No, it is acceptable for different samplers to be used and for samples to be taken on different days. Please note, however, that we cannot start our testing until our laboratory has received all samples. Please note that the mother of a child under 16 should accompany that child to
the sampling appointment.
 
Does the mother of the child have to be tested?
Yes, unless there is an exceptional reason for her not to participate. In any event, we will require the child’s mother to give her consent for the tests to be carried out on the child if the child is under the age of 16 years.
 
Who arranges the sampling appointments?
The adults being tested (or their solicitors if they have one) should arrange the appointments directly with the samplers concerned. These appointments must be made at least five days in advance. This is
because you must notify us so that we can send the necessary sampling kit(s) to your nominated sampler well in advance of your appointment. Please note that when you make the appointment, you should ask how much the sampler will charge for taking the sample(s), as the sampler’s fee is not included in the fees that we charge. It is the individual person’s responsibility to pay the fee direct to the sampler at the time the sample(s) is taken.
 
Do I have to take anything with me to my sampling appointment?
Yes. You must remember to take two recent, full-faced, passport-sized
photographs of yourself to the appointment. A mother must also take two photographs of each child as well as photographs of herself. These photographs must be produced, otherwise the sampler will not take the sample. Please also ensure that you have sufficient money with you to pay the sampler for taking the sample(s).  Please note for Immigration testing you are required to take Three (3) passport sized photographs and appropriate photographic identification
 
Why are my photographs required?
Photographs of each person to be tested are required for identification purposes. When you go to have your sample taken, the sampler will sign the back of the photographs to confirm that they are a true likeness of the person sampled. These photographs and documentation completed
by you and the sampler will be sent back to LGC with your sample.
 
How long does the testing take?
We are normally able to complete our testing and submit a report approximately five working days from receipt of all samples, providing it is a standard paternity case (mother, child, alleged father). In more
complex relationship testing, our testing will take longer. Very occasionally, it is necessary to repeat part of the scientific process, which may result in a slight delay in reporting. In all cases we endeavour to despatch results as soon as they are available.  Immigration testing results are available in approximately 10 working days
 
What will the testing report say?
The results of our testing will indicate one of the following:
 
• That the man tested is at least 99.99% certain to be the father of the tested child compared to a random individual or
• That the man tested is not the father of the child.
 
In the case of a sibling we will indicate whether or not the siblings tested are half or full siblings, and a statistical analysis is provided to show the likelihood of the relationship. For any other relationship testing, the relationship will be indicated in a similar fashion.