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Immigration DNA Experts

Frequently Asked Questions

Consult the list below to see if your question is common and already answered. Hover over the question to show the answer. If you have questions about your results, please visit our Interpreting Your Results page.

GenQuest has been performing DNA testing since 1990, and has performed thousands of tests for participants all over the world.
Our staff are thoroughly trained in and knowledgeable of the DNA testing process and how it is used for immigration and other US government agency purposes.

GenQuest offers several options for relationship tests, and most tests costs are detailed on our Order Now page.

None of the testing performed by GenQuest or any other laboratory is accredited—the laboratories themselves are accredited, and depending on whether or not the test’s paperwork and circumstances meet standards and guidelines set forth by the laboratory’s accrediting body, the testing performed falls into categories of non-legal and legal testing.

Non-legal tests are ones which, at some point of the process, do not fall within the scope of the laboratory’s accreditation for the specific testing requested. Personal Knowledge tests are non-legal, are often done for peace of mind purposes, and cannot be used in a court of law. This is mostly due to the fact that collections for these tests may be performed by the participants of the test in the comfort of your own home and are not collected by an unbiased third party with a complete chain of custody and identity verification.

Legal tests are ones which fall within the scope of the laboratory’s accreditation for the specific testing requested. Court Admissible tests are legal, include a full chain of custody, are admissible in court, and are accepted by US Government Agencies for relative petitions, visa applications, and other immigration purposes. Court admissible tests and tests for US Government Agencies (with participants in and/or outside of the US) follow all standards and guidelines set forth by the AABB for accredited relationship testing laboratories. Collections for these tests are performed by an unbiased third party.

All samples are treated identically in the laboratory environment at GenQuest regardless of whether or not the collection of the samples meets accrediting body standards and guidelines.

ests can be paid for by check, money order, credit card, or through PayPal. GenQuest accepts all major credit cards.

Depending on the type of test being requested you may be required to pay the full balance when the samples are submitted or the full balance when the test is initiated. Samples will not be processed until a case is paid in full. Forensic tests may require a non-refundable deposit when samples are submitted.

GenQuest will refund any overpayment made on a case. Any client who has paid more than the required deposit but chooses to cancel the case before any testing has been performed is entitled to a refund of anything over their $250 non-refundable deposit.

Once all samples for a relationship test have been delivered to the laboratory and the case is paid for in full, testing will take approximately five to seven business days. Please allow for time after the test is completed for your results to arrive by your preferred delivery method.

Please note that the duration of your case (as compared to the actual testing) may be longer, depending on the circumstances and location of the participants in the case. Many tests with participants outside of the United States can take two months or more to be completed.

GenQuest offers Priority Processing Rush for an additional fee. Visit our <a href=”/order-now-or-make-a-payment/”>Order Form</a> page for these fees. Processing Priority only applies once the samples are received at the laboratory.

Please visit our Order Form or Contact Us to initiate testing and we will inform you on how to proceed.
A standard sample collection is done with buccal swabs (cotton-tipped applicators) which are used to swab the inside of the cheek to collect cheek cells. This is a quick, non-invasive, and standard method for DNA collection. If you are taking a test for court admissible or US Government agency purposes, an unbiased third party will need to perform the collection. If one or more participants are in the Reno/Sparks area of Nevada, the participant(s) may have our staff perform the collection. If one or more participants reside outside of the Reno/Sparks area, our staff will locate a collection site as close as possible to the participant(s) to arrange an appointment. GenQuest staff will endeavor to make the appointment at a time and place convenient for the client, but in cases where a client resides in a small town or city, it may be necessary for that participant to travel to a larger city for their collection. Additionally, very few collection sites have weekend hours. GenQuest arranges for collections throughout the United States on a daily basis, and are happy to work with you to arrange for a collection outside of our facility. Participants residing in foreign countries will be collected at an appointment arranged by their US Embassy.
For Court Admissible tests, all adult participants at a collection must bring a valid government-issued photo ID, such as a driver’s license or passport. All minor participants (under eighteen years of age) in a court admissible test must have a birth certificate or, if the person signing consent for the child is not listed on the birth certificate, custody papers or a power of attorney presented, as well as the valid government-issued photo ID of the adult signing for consent. Any additional documentation needed will be noted before your appointment. If the above noted documentation is unavailable for any reason, please contact GenQuest to discuss your options.

For all Court Admissible tests, an unbiased third party collector will collect the sample. At no point may the participant(s) have the kit or collected sample(s) in their possession, as this violates the chain of custody requirements and compromises the integrity of the test. The third party collector will be selected by GenQuest.

No. Participants may go to their collections at separate times and separate places. As long as GenQuest has been provided with the names and contact information of all participants, separate collections for the same test can be arranged.

GenQuest can test for a variety of relationships including Paternity, Maternity, Full Siblingship (where the participants would share both parents), Half Siblingship (where the participants would share only one parent), Grandpaternity (with one or both potential grandparents), and Avuncular (a potential aunt or uncle to a child). Non-direct relationships (siblingships, grandpaternity, and avuncular) may not provide conclusive evidence for or against a relationship due to the degree of the potential relationship. Visit our <a href=”/paternity-and-relationship-dna-testing/”>Paternity and Relationship Testing</a> page for more information.

When done correctly, with up-to-date equipment and established testing methods, DNA relationship testing is 100% accurate. Through the proper handling, testing, and analysis of samples by competent and trained professionals, accompanied by a strict chain of custody, GenQuest can guarantee accurate results for your personal, court, or US Government Agency purposes.

Many laboratories confuse the term “accuracy” with the probability of relatedness listed on your results. The probability is a statistical measure, based on the likelihood of the biological relationship. In the case of paternity or maternity results where the alleged parent cannot be excluded (meaning the genetic evidence indicates that the biological relationship is true), the probability could be 99.9% or higher. In cases of paternity or maternity results where the alleged parent is excluded (meaning the biological relationship is not true), the probability will always be 0%. This is due to the fact that, if the DNA profiles of the child and alleged parent do not match, there is no chance statistically that the two tested participants are biologically related as a mother-child or father-child relationship. The probability or likelihood for a non-direct relationship, such as siblingship, grandpaternity, or avuncular, are a little more complicated due to the nature of the relationship being tested. You are invited to contact GenQuest to discuss this with an analyst if you have questions about a second degree relationship.

DNA tests will never generate a probability of 100%. To produce a probability of 100%, a laboratory would have to test every person to ever exist in the world. Since this is not possible, laboratories use established population databases to calculate the probability of relatedness.

Tests conducted following all standards and guidelines set forth by the AABB (with a full chain of custody on the samples submitted) are fully admissible in court.

GenQuest can send results by mail and email. If you have opted for mail delivery, please allow for transit time after your results are completed. Trackable priority shipping is also available for an additional cost.

Results are never released over the phone, and anyone calling to obtain a copy of the results will have to furnish proof in writing that they are authorized to receive a copy of the results. Authorization must be signed by a participant of the test.

Results may be discussed over the phone after the report has been released, and the caller has verified that they possess a copy of the results.

GenQuest policy dictates that each participant in a test is entitled to a copy of the results.

In all tests with one or more participants residing outside of the United States, no results will be released to the participant(s) outside of the United States unless an email address has been provided. No physical copies of reports are sent outside of the US.

Non-participants who signed consent for any minor in the test will receive results in place of the minor.

If a non-participant who did not sign consent for any participant wishes to receive a copy of the results, a participant must grant authorization to GenQuest to have the results sent to the non-participant. The destination address may be noted on the test request form or the chain of custody or, if the participant wishes to add a recipient after the documentation is submitted, a written note granting authorization may be submitted. This note must indicate the case number, the new recipient and their full address (email or mailing), and include the signature of the participant.

GenQuest conforms to the AABB standards in regards to the privacy of personal information and has strict policies about the personal information of the participants tested by our laboratory. GenQuest does not release your personal information or results to anyone other than involved or authorized parties.

The HIPAA act and its privacy rule apply only to healthcare and health-related businesses. The DNA testing GenQuest performs is not a medical or health-related test and therefore GenQuest does not fit under the HIPAA law.

GenQuest must surrender all information in a case if a subpoena is served.

If you are having trouble understanding what your results mean, you can visit our <a href=”/interpreting-your-results/”>Interpreting Your Results</a> page, or contact GenQuest. Our staff will be happy to discuss your results and help you understand them.

Was your question not answered here? Contact GenQuest or call our office at 775-358-0652 (toll free 877-362-5227) and our staff will be happy to assist you.