When couples with children choose to end their marriages, the question of custody usually arises right away. However, when the paternity of one or more children comes into question, this can have a negative effect on any custody case.
Arcpoint Labs reports that any paternity test related to custodial issues must follow the chain of custody for admissible and valid results.
Understanding chain of custody
Chain of custody is a term used in relation to the whereabouts of a DNA sample taken by the court to establish paternity. Once officials collect the sample, they track each step, from beginning to end. This ensures that no one, at any step of the chain, may tamper with or alter the sample.
Chain of custody prevents sample swapping
Individuals who require a certain outcome of a DNA test to establish paternity may try to engage in sample swapping. This is one of the greatest advantages of the chain of custody since the sample remains secure at all times and prevents such tampering and is usually more reliable than home testing kits.
The role of the chain of custody in divorce proceedings
While the outcome of a DNA test inside a court setting does not guarantee that one individual will gain custody of a child or children, the chain of custody can support certain arguments and statements regarding whether one parent remained faithful to his or her partner during the marriage. The more protected a DNA sample is, the more secure the court can be in its results.
Those seeking a paternity test to strengthen their child custody case may want to secure a sample that undergoes the chain of custody to ensure viable results.