Advancements in medical technology have brought DNA testing into our homes with the accessibility of home DNA tests. The most common of these is the DNA paternity test, however, with a wide range of tests and services available it is important to understand the varying costs, and what affects them.

DNA Tests – Weighing Up The Costs

DNA testing is now recognized as the most reliable way to confirm biological relationships, and with so many different types of DNA tests available it is useful to know how to weigh up the cost. Prices differ depending on many factors, including; the type of test required, the number of persons involved, and the timeframes for issuing results amongst other things.

Thanks to the internet it has never been easier, or cheaper, to order a home DNA test. A person simply selects a properly accredited DNA testing company, orders a testing kit online and waits for it to be sent to their home. DNA samples can be collected in the comfort of your own home and posted back to the laboratory in the same day. You then wait for your results to be sent to you. It’s that straightforward. Below are some examples of factors that will affect the cost of a test.

Determining Factors In The Cost Of A DNA Test

  • Many factors will affect the price of a DNA test and the number of people being tested is a major factor. A paternity test will increase in price depending on the number of persons being tested. Tests with other relatives, for example a sibling or grandparent test will increase in cost if one adds a parent into the comparison.
  • The type of test you select will also affect the cost. Typically, tests like relationship testing or Forensic testing, which require more advanced analysis, will be priced higher than a standard paternity test for example.
  • When time is an issue, and results are needed as quickly as possible, most DNA companies will offer an express service at an additional charge. This can mean receiving your results up to 5 days sooner than with a standard test.
  • A major contributing factor to the cost of a DNA test is whether you require an “at home test” (aka “peace of mind test”) or a legal test. The standard at home test will require less paperwork and administration and is therefore, normally, a cheaper option. Results, however, cannot be used in a court of law and are purely to satisfy a need to know.
  • Most DNA testing companies will offer a range of legal tests, for example a Legal Paternity Test, that are court admissible. These are often needed in cases where a parent is contesting financial payments for a child, or when custody is being argued. Another legal test offered is the Immigration Test. Many governments now endorse the use of DNA tests as proof of biological relationships for citizenship and visa applications. These legal tests will cost more than a standard home test, due to the added complexity of managing them, and will usually involve medical or government professionals.
  • Non-Standard Samples (aka DNA Forensic Testing) are another major factor to consider when determining the price of your DNA test. In some situations it is not possible to obtain an oral swab sample from a person. In such cases, for an extra cost, it is possible to submit a different item, such as a used tissue or chewing gum, to a laboratory for analysis. These are known as non-standard samples and involve a more complicated DNA extraction process. Depending on what sample is submitted will affect the cost of the test, and the percentage of probability that a lab can extract DNA from it.

Selecting A DNA Company – Quality vs Cost

When selecting a DNA testing company, it is important not to let your decision be based solely on cost. DNA and forensic testing is not something to be taken likely and hunting for bargains will not necessarily produce the best results.

Choosing a company that uses a fully accredited laboratory is the most important part of your selection process. Throughout the world, laboratory accreditation is a process used to determine technical competence.A specialist technical team will assess certain factors, which they feel are relevant to a laboratory’s ability to produce accurate and reliable data. Be sure to research a website properly first before placing any orders.