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Pros and Cons of Using Home Paternity Tests

home paternity test

Are you trying to confirm if you are the father of a child? A paternity test may be a reliable solution for you.

Research shows that paternity DNA testing is dependable for establishing parentage. That’s because current technology has enabled DNA tests to be almost 100% accurate.

If you’re thinking about using a home paternity test, it’s important you understand its advantages and disadvantages. Let’s explore the pros and cons associated with home tests.

Pros of Using a Home Paternity Test

Thanks to DNA technology advancements, purchasing and performing DNA paternity tests is easier than ever. Let’s examine the many benefits of choosing a home test compared with a legal paternity DNA test.


A major reason to choose a home test is you can easily order a testing kit online and get it shipped to your house. You can then take a sample of your DNA and send the sample to a laboratory.

Afterward, you’ll wait to receive your results. It should take about five to seven business days for the lab to produce the results. They may send the results to you by mail and email.

A home test kit will usually feature three oral swab sets and the envelopes they should be stored in. You will rub the swabs along your cheek to remove cells. These cells contain your DNA, so it’s critical that you collect enough cells to generate an accurate result.

Alternatively, you can submit a personal item that might contain your DNA. Examples of personal items include the following:

  • Fingernail clippings
  • Toothbrush materials
  • Hair samples

It’s generally best to get cells directly from a person when doing a paternity test, so the oral swab technique is preferred. However, using personal items is also acceptable. 

Either way, this testing process is pain-free and simple. In addition, you can perform this procedure in private and at a time that works best for you. You no longer have to schedule a doctor’s appointment or undergo a painful blood test.


If you follow your DNA test kit’s instructions, you can rest assured the results will be dependable. In addition, if you order a test kit from a reputable company, you won’t have to worry about your results’ reliability (more on this later).

Cons of Using a Home Paternity Test

Home paternity tests come with a couple of drawbacks as well. Let’s take a peek at their weaknesses.

Cheating Concerns

The results of a home DNA test aren’t admissible in court because some people could cheat on these tests.

For instance, let’s say a man does not want their DNA test to be positive because he doesn’t want to be named the father of a child. They could use their friend’s or co-worker’s DNA in place of their DNA.

Likewise, perhaps a woman doesn’t want a certain man to be named her child’s father. In this situation, she could use a different child’s DNA during the testing process.

Unless the child’s and the father’s samples are produced when they are in front of each other and the results are sent to a lab right away, it can be hard to trust the submitted samples’ accuracy.

Because the potential for cheating is high with a home test, you can’t use this test for legal purposes. You can only use it for personal reasons.

You must take a legal paternity DNA test if you want the court to accept your results.

This testing process involves having a doctor or registered nurse take DNA samples from you. These medical professionals would also have to authenticate your identity. In addition, they would have to send the results to a lab.

Quality Concerns

Another drawback of a home paternity test is that not every home DNA test is the same. If you’re not careful, you can easily purchase one that doesn’t provide accurate results.

To make sure you purchase a trustworthy test, look for a test kit provider that is affiliated with and nationally recognized by DATIA, an alcohol and drug testing association. They should also be recognized by SAPAA, an association for those who administer substance abuse programs.

In addition, before you order a kit, ask the company how long ago the kit was created. It’s recommended you use a kit that is no more than a year old. However, older kits may still produce accurate results.

In addition, ask how many genetic markers a company’s kit tests. According to the DNA testing industry’s standard, testing for at least 16 markers is essential for identifying a child-father relationship.

Some companies don’t test for this many makers to save money and time with testing. Avoid these companies’ tests. They might not deliver reliable results.

If possible, go with a testing kit that tests for at least 20 markers. This will help ensure the most accurate paternity results.

How We Can Help With Paternity DNA Testing

A home paternity test can be a convenient way to establish paternity, as you can perform the test at home. This type of test can also be accurate if you follow your test kit’s instructions.

A drawback of a home paternity test is that courts won’t accept the test results since people can easily cheat on these tests. In addition, not all home tests are high-quality.

At ReliaLabTest, we take pride in offering high-quality DNA paternity tests, including home tests. Get in touch with us to learn more about our testing kits, and order today!

Order a Test

Whether you are an individual looking to get a drug test done today or an employer looking to get a pre-employment drug test done today, ordering a test online is easier than ever! Just submit your order online, receive your test authorization by email, go to your local clinic to be tested, and receive your test results in 24 to 48 hours.

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If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact our lab.