By definition, you would think a paternity test should include the possible father of a child, right? But what if the man in question isn’t available to test? He may be deceased, imprisoned, absent for whatever reason, or unwilling to participate. Thanks to modern DNA analysis, accurate UK paternity testing without the father is actually quite commonplace, and—with the correct individuals participating—conclusive results can be expected.
UK Paternity Testing without the Father: Testing Close Relatives Instead
A skilled DNA analyst can connect the dots of family relationship and give a probability of paternity by testing members of the possible father’s family with whom he shares a close biological relationship: his parents, brothers and sisters, other known children, etc.
For each of the following relationship tests, DNA samples for the child’s mother are also required in order to get the most conclusive results.
Paternal Grandparents: The best option for UK paternity testing without the father is to test one or both of his parents instead. Ideally, both grandparents’ DNA would be compared with the child’s and the child’s mother’s, because the more genes that can be analysed, the better. However, conclusive results may be obtained if only one grandparent is available to test.
Paternal Aunt(s) and/or Uncle(s): Another possible option for UK paternity testing without the father is to test full siblings of the possible father. Brothers and sisters share 50% of the same DNA and an analyst may be able to get a probability of relationship between an aunt or uncle and the child in question, and thereby establish a probability of a paternity relationship between the child and the possible father.
Siblingship: Finally, a siblingship test can be performed, which requires the DNA of another known child of the possible father. The test determines if the known child and the child in question share a biological relationship or are unrelated.
Putting the Pieces of the Paternity Puzzle Together
Using other family members’ DNA samples instead of the possible father’s requires much more extensive analysis. Imagine it as a genetic jigsaw puzzle: the more pieces of the puzzle an analyst has at their disposal, the more complete the picture the analyst can reveal. The paternity picture becomes clearer and more complete when more of the possible father’s close biological family members participate in testing.
Something to keep in mind: Testing with the possible father is always preferable to other types of DNA testing because the relationship is a direct one between father and child and the likelihood of getting conclusive results is much higher. It’s also much more cost-effective to do a straight paternity test since it requires less complex analysis.
So accurate paternity answers really are possible, even if the possible father himself cannot test. And the great news is, if a medical professional handles DNA collection, results for family-relationship paternity tests are court-admissible.