There is an urban legend that over thirty percent of all children are not born of their appointed father; instead, they are the products of adultery. Because of this long-standing myth, the idea of a paternity test has been a persistent one in the minds of the public. Here, we will explain what a paternity test actually is and answer questions on how it works to prove who fathered the child.
Why A Paternity Test:
Some question why this test is called a ‘paternity’. The answer is quite simple: unless the mother was impregnated through an egg donation, it’s obvious that she is the mother.
The father, however, can be anyone–that is why children are tested against his DNA and not hers.
How Does A Paternity Test Work:
Though there are other methods, DNA testing is the easiest–and most effective–way to test a child for paternity.
DNA is unique for each individual but, when sexual reproduction occurs, an embryo is created. That embryo is formed by taking genetic material from both parents to create a new string of DNA.
To prove who is the father, one only has to look at the child’s DNA pattern. In it, you will find evidence of the father’s unique traits. Certain sequences will be available, and these will prove whose traits passed on.
Is A Paternity Test Accurate:
Yes. Unless the case involves a twin brother, DNA should easily be able to tell who fathered the child. The test is accurate.
Is A Paternity Test Necessary:
This is the gray area of the subject. A father’s right to know if a child is his is not questioned; what is questioned, however, is the effects on the child. Often, cases of fathers seeking parental rights to children who have with their mothers and another man who they view as their father surface. These cases are long, drawn-out battles of basic parental rights versus basic child welfare. The father may argue that, since it was he who actually created the child, he should have the right to be present in his or her life. Others would argue, however, that a child in a stable home should not be forced to have two fathers and, therefore, two lives.
It is this heated debate that has divided many, and left the rest uncertain. Each case is different and must be examined as unique, which makes setting precedent almost impossible.
To have a paternity test is to open up a great deal of consequences–not only for the child, but for the parents. It is not a simple matter, or one that should be decided too quickly. These tests may be taken without consent, but there is a law in the UK that is demanding that no test be given without the express knowledge of all involved. This is to protect families.
A paternity test is an effective way to discover who fathered a child, but it can also be an effective way to cause a child grief. It should be approached with caution.
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