It is possible to carry out a paternity test when the alleged father is in prison but how do you go about getting the samples from a person behind bars? Who do you need to contact? What is the procedure?
Getting a paternity test done when one of the required test participants is in prison complicates matters. Normally, carrying out a DNA test is quite simple so as long as everyone is available and willing to take part. In a case when the alleged father is in prison, you will have to be informed about a few added issues which come to impinge on the paternity test.
I need to initiate a paternity test in prison, where do I begin?
In Australia, you will need to contact the office of the Attorney General in your state. They will be able to give you some guidance. Often, they will organize the sample collection following what is known as a chain of custody as dictated by the law. The test participants will need to provide identification and sign the paper work provided. The DNA sample from the incarcerated alleged father for the DNA paternity test is taken in the prison facility itself. If you live in the US, you might want to start from the District Attorney’s office- Child Division (in the US) and get advice from there.
The level of security within the prison system in which the alleged father is imprisoned can delay paternity testing.
Contacting the prison facility to learn the protocol they have in place for paternity testing on prisoners is also a good starting point. Often they will have a doctor or member of the prison staff in charge of taking the DNA sample from the inmates.
Nobody can turn up at any correctional facility requesting to take a DNA sample from a convict without appropriate consent from the required authorities. A lawyer can also give you some guidelines on this.
If you are seeking child support
If the alleged father is in prison, the mother can take the case to court and have the Judge issue a court ordered DNA test to try and force him to provide alimony for the child or children. However, the father must of course have the assets to do this. Until he is in prison, under the eyes of the law, he is unemployed and thus, has no income. There has been an elimination of income once the person has entered the penitentiary and no claims can be made if there are no tangible assets.
This does not mean all is lost. Once the prison sentence is over, the alleged father may have to pay the cumulative amount of money that has amassed over his time in prison. If he does have monetary assets while still doing time, the judge may order those assets to be taken while the alleged father is still finishing his prison sentence.
Why establish paternity?
One cannot emphasize the importance of establishing the true paternity of a child. Not only does the alleged father get to provide support for the child but paternity testing, or the proof of paternity, has been shown to help foster stronger father-child bonds, especially for those parents having doubts over the issue. Of course, carrying out a paternity test, from a psychological perspective, is not plain sailing. It can weigh heavily on peoples’ conscience and has the potential to overturn and tear families apart or bring them closer.
Paternity testing when the alleged father is in prison will mean you need to bear all the above in mind and seek advice from the right people; but do not be daunted, it can and has been done many times.
The author is an expert writer and has written numerous articles on various topics. The above article is all about taking a DNA paternity test, when the alleged father is in prison. Useful information about court ordered DNA test and the legal procedures for getting a paternity test done is also mentioned in the article.