DNA testing

This process tests whether or not someone is the biological father of a child. A mouth swab is taken from the mother, father and child and sent off to the laboratory for DNA profile testing. Results are usually available within 5 days.

Depending on your reason for wanting a test, you may want a home test or a legal test. The test is exactly the same, as is the accuracy; however the way the test is done differs quite a lot.

  • In a legal test, the swabs will be taken by an independent medical practitioner and delivered by them to the lab. Therefore the sample is protected. Identification is also required, along with passport photos. If you are in Court proceedings or planning to change the name on a birth certificate, where proof is required, you will need a legal test.
  • In a home test, the focus is more on peace of mind and a medical practitioner is not involved. You will not be looking for the sample to be protected and will only be interested in the result as an informal process.

Legal Aid: In mediation you can still access legal aid. If DNA testing is done through mediation, it can be claimed as a disbursement subject to approval from the Legal Aid Agency. So, if you are eligible for legal aid, you could have a free DNA test. If you are not eligible for legal aid, you need to check how much you are going to be charged before agreeing to the test. It is usually cheaper to have the testing done through National Family Mediation (NFM) as part of the mediation process.


Mediation is designed to support you to reach your own agreements for your children and mediators can now arrange for DNA tests to be done as part of the mediation process. They will help you work out whether you want a legal test or a home test depending on how the results will be used. Because the results could have far-reaching consequences, i.e. whether a parent carries on having contact with a child, this needs careful consideration and will be talked through in mediation.

National Family Mediation (NFM) is a network of professional family mediation providers based in England and Wales that work with families affected by relational breakdown. All providers aim to help clients achieve an outcome that works best for them and their family. NFM is pleased to work in partnership with DNA Worldwide Group to provide all NFM clients with the UK’s most accurate, fully accredited DNA, Drug and Alcohol testing service.

In addition to the quality and fast serviced offered all NFM clients will receive a discount of testing conducted by DNA Worldwide. Depending on your circumstance legal aid funding may be available to help with the cost of all or part of the testing fees.

If you would like to get more information about mediation and/or make an appointment you can contact NFM direct on 0300 4000 636 or you can contact a NFM family mediation provider in your area.

All services also take referrals from Solicitors, the court or other helping / support agencies.


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