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Rolling DNA lab provides speed in resolving paternity disputes

Technological and scientific advances continue to alter our daily lives. Scientists have unlocked many of the secrets of the human genome, and DNA testing has revolutionized many things from criminal prosecutions to child support hearings. Establishing paternity is a crucial factor in determining what rights a putative Florida father has to see his children and what responsibilities he has to provide for their support.

DNA tests are usually conducted within a doctor's office or a clinic. But a new mobile DNA lab is roaming the streets, another example of technology's ever-advancing progress towards efficiency and speed. Now available in New York City, a rolling RV accepts people who have a doctor's prescription to undergo the test. After a DNA sample is provided and sent to a lab, the person can expect to hear the results in as few as three business days.

A mobile DNA testing facility may be a temporary novelty or it may evolve into something more permanent. But its very existence is arguably evidence of a lasting trend: More people are seeking to confirm or, in some cases, disconfirm the paternity of their child. Approximately half a million paternity tests are performed annually, most of those conducted at the behest of child support agencies.

Part of this growing concern with paternity has been partly brought on by a demographic change: More children are being born out of wedlock. Since the law imposes important responsibilities on parents to support and provide for a child, unassailable knowledge that one is or is not the father of a child is important.

Source: Time, "Who's Your Daddy? A Mobile Paternity-Testing Truck Offers Answers on the Go," Alexandra Sifferlin, Aug. 24, 2012

• Of course, the knowledge is also vital to fathers who want to become involved in their children's lives but currently cannot because paternity is in doubt. If you would like more information on our firm, please visit our Pensacola paternity page.

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