Should I get a DNA test for Immigration?

How do you prove the family relationship that you claim in your immigration petition for your family member really exists?  In countries where immigration fraud is pretty common immigration offices may require DNA testing to show that you and your family member truly are related.  It can be required in out of wedlock cases where a father is petitioning for a child and even mother and child relationships where the consulate suspects that the mother is not the true parent of the child.

Is this test mandatory?  No, it is not and for many it can be an expensive process.  But remember that if a consular officer is suggesting that you should get a DNA test, then they will probably deny your petition if you do not get that test done.  It is not best to get the test done before it is asked of you because there are specific agencies that the consulate has approved as a testing facility for DNA tests.  They will give you the information for the recommended facilities when they request the test.

What is the process for getting a DNA test done? Once your relative receives the list of approved facilities they will schedule an appointment to get their part of the DNA test done.  This part can be done at the consulate or a doctor’s office depending on the country involved.  You will need to get your part done with a US agency that will arrange to get your results over to the consulate.

How much will this cost?  This process ranges in cost anywhere from several hundred dollars to well over a thousand dollars.

How long will it take? It can take several months to get results.

Think about whether the consulate may request that you get a DNA test done.  It may be an expense that you have to plan and budget for.  You will probably be asked for DNA testing if you are petitioning for a child that was born out of wedlock.  Other cases of blood relationships that have been asked to submit to DNA testing have been mother/child and sibling cases.  In places where it is easy to get doctored birth certificates and other identifying documents the consulate asks for these tests as a way to fight against immigration fraud.

Be prepared and feel free to contact me if you have any questions.