If you’ve recently taken a DNA test, you might wonder how long it will take you to get your results back. Unfortunately, there isn’t one set-in-stone answer to that question.
The time it takes you to get your results back depends on the type of test you take and the lab you use. But we know that you need a more concrete answer than that. So we, at DNAGeek.com, decided to break down the entire process for you.
Your DNA Test Results
The amount of time it takes for you to get your DNA test results back depends on the type of test you take and the lab you use. While all labs use a similar process to complete your test, some may test for more DNA markers than others.
Also, different types of tests analyze different parts of your DNA. For example, when proving paternity, the lab only needs to compare specific markers of the child and potential father.
So this type of DNA test may not take as long to process as a detailed ancestry DNA test that analyzes hundreds of thousands of markers.
Different Types of DNA Tests
There are several different types of DNA tests available. Each one looks for specific DNA markers and analyzes them to determine your results.
Ancestry Test Results
Ancestry DNA tests have become fairly popular over the past few years. You can purchase a DNA test kit online or through local retailers such as CVS and Walgreens.
How long it will take to receive your results depends on the test you purchase. Ancestry.com’s DNA test kit takes between six and eight weeks to process, on average, while 23andMe’s test kit only takes between two and four weeks from the time the DNA sample is received.
But you should look at more than the time it takes to get your results when you’re purchasing a test because different companies provide different types of results.
For example, 23andMe has an ancestry DNA test that also includes a genetic health screening, which is a good option for anyone who wants to know if they are at a higher risk for diseases such as Alzheimer’s.
However, AncestryDNA has the world’s largest consumer database. So if you’re trying to find long-lost relatives, it’s a good option.
Paternity Test Results
The results from paternity DNA tests can become available in as little as two business days to a week or they can take anywhere from three to 12 weeks. It depends on the lab you use.
If the test is completed locally at a large lab, you should have your results fairly quick. However, if you purchase an at-home paternity DNA test kit, for your child and their potential father to take, it takes longer to get the results.
This is because you have to send the DNA into the lab for the swab analysis to be performed and then, wait for the results to come in the mail.
It’s important to note that if you’re taking a paternity test because it’s needed for legal purposes, you should check with the court before you make a purchase. It’s important to use a lab that’s approved by your local court so that things like chain of custody don’t come into question later.
Pets Test Results
Did you know that you can have your pet’s DNA tested? Most people complete DNA tests on dogs because they want to verify their dog’s breed mixture, but pet DNA tests can also prepare you for future breed-related health problems.
Like with other DNA tests, the time it takes you to receive results from a pet DNA test varies depending on the lab you use. Embark’s dog DNA test is one of the most thorough on the market.
It takes between two and four weeks to receive results from their tests. However, because it’s one of the most popular options, it could take a bit longer if the lab is backed up. Wisdom Panel 4.0 is also a popular test.
It takes them between two and three weeks to make your pet’s test results available to you online.
Longevity and Aging Test Results
TeloYears offers a DNA test that tells you how well you’re aging. Unlike other at-home DNA tests, this test is a blood test. However, the lab only needs a drop or two of blood to complete the test.
The company provides the longevity and aging test results within three to four weeks of receiving the sample. But they also have an option for advanced ancestry DNA testing, which takes from six to eight weeks.
Finding Your DNA Test Results
Genetic testing and paternity DNA tests that are performed through a local lab, doctor, or hospital typically have quicker turnaround times — between one and two weeks. However, in most cases, the lab mails the results to you.
Getting DNA test results at home from a kit you purchased is a little different. Instead of waiting for the company to mail you the test results, you mail in your DNA sample and once it’s processed, the results are available to you online.
Most companies have you register your test online before mailing your sample in so that they can update you on the process via email as necessary.
How Long Does it Take to Get Your DNA Test Results?
Regardless of the kind of DNA test you take, you should expect to wait at least two weeks to receive your results. Some labs may have a shorter turnaround time, but don’t be surprised if you’re waiting four to eight weeks for your results.
If you’ve purchased an at-home DNA test kit, there’s a good chance you’ll wait at least four weeks to receive your results, sometimes longer.
Paternity tests and other genetic DNA tests that are court or doctor ordered and performed locally could have your results back to you within a few days, but if the lab is busy, it could take upwards of two weeks to receive your results
Why Would It Take Longer to Get DNA Test Results?
The time it takes to get your DNA test results varies between labs. If the lab you choose is particularly busy when your sample arrives, it might take longer for the lab to process it.
It may also take longer to get your DNA test results if you’re getting an extremely detailed report. For example, paternity tests don’t typically take a long time because the lab is simply comparing one DNA sample to another.
While ancestry DNA tests with health screenings can take up to eight weeks because the lab is processing so many different DNA markers at once.
Can Your DNA Test Results Change?
Your ancestry DNA test results can change over time, but it’s not your DNA that’s changing. This typically happens as the lab’s database grows.
The same thing can happen with pet DNA testing. As the lab adds more dog breeds to their database, the test becomes more thorough so if you give your dog a DNA test today and one five years from now, you might see a slight difference in breed types.
The more breeds in the database the more accurate a test is.
It’s important to note that while you might see changes in ancestry and pet DNA tests over time, paternity DNA test results are always 99.99 percent accurate and won’t change. This is because your DNA isn’t changing over time.
How Long Does It Take To Get DNA Results From Child Support?
The amount of time it takes to receive DNA tests from child support proceedings depends on the process in your state and the lab used. If the father of your child is denying paternity, you have to ask the court to order a paternity DNA test to get the process started.
In most cases, the lab that conducts the testing will send the results to you, the child’s father, and the court. Depending on the lab, this process could take anywhere from a week to 12 weeks.
After the results are received, the court continues its proceedings for child support. But because there are several things that factor into the process, you should expect a total timeframe of about six months.
Because the process takes so long, it’s important to start it as soon as possible. Also, you should ask your attorney whether you’re eligible for back support once paternity is established.
Some states allow the court to order child support retroactively back to the date of your child’s birth.
How Long Will DNA Test Results Take If Done In Two Different States?
DNA testing across state lines can be a more complicated process because different states have different requirements for paternity testing. Because of this, it’s important to work with an experienced lawyer throughout the process if possible.
Before you request a court-ordered DNA test, you have to establish jurisdiction — basically, you need to know where the court claims will be heard.
In most cases, it’s easiest to do this in the state in which the child resides, but if both parties want testing done in their own state, the court may use the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act to establish jurisdiction for you, most likely depending on where the child resides and who has legal custody of the child.
In legal proceedings, all DNA testing has to be completed in an approved facility that is accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks. It’s very important that chain of custody requirements are met, and using an approved facility guarantees this.
Once all of the legalities are in place and the lab has collected the necessary samples from all parties, your results should be available within one to two weeks. Keep in mind, these results are mailed to you, the potential father, and the court, so the entire process may take much longer than that.
Tips for Getting the Fastest DNA Test Results
If you want the fastest results possible, consider finding a local lab to complete your DNA test. Typically, local labs and doctor-ordered DNA tests are the quickest to be completed.
If you’re taking an ancestry DNA test or you’re interested in having your pet’s DNA analyzed, you should compare the processing timeframe from different companies before purchasing a kit. Keep in mind though, the length of time it takes a company to process your DNA test results depends on what they are analyzing.
So if you purchase a kit solely based on getting the quickest results possible, you might not get results that are as detailed as you’d expect.
Choosing the Best Lab
When you’re choosing the best lab for your DNA test, there are a few things you should consider — and these things may vary depending on the type of DNA test you need.
If you’re trying to establish paternity for a child and the test needs to be used in court proceedings, you have to choose a court-approved facility that’s accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks. There are approved facilities located in all states.
Once you obtain a list of your options from the court or your lawyer, you can compare labs based on price and turnaround time. You may also want to check with the potential father’s health insurance company to see if paternity testing is covered, and if so, whether you need to use a specific lab.
If you’re taking an ancestry DNA test, you should compare the cost of the test, the type of results given, and the turnaround time. It’s also a good idea to read reviews from each lab you’re considering to make sure you’re choosing the best option for your needs.
If you want a DNA health screening with your results, 23andMe is the only ancestry DNA lab that’s approved by the FDA to complete this, as of February 2019.
When testing your pet’s DNA, you should review how many breeds the lab has in their database. The more breeds the lab has available, the more comprehensive your results will be.
Also, you should verify whether the lab you choose also does a health screening on your pet’s DNA if you’re interested in knowing potential breed-related health risks that might affect your pet.
Once you’ve determined the type of test you want to purchase, you can narrow your list based on price and turnaround time.