Grandparent DNA Test: What You Need to Know

Sometimes establishing paternity is not as easy as it sounds. If the possible father is simply not available for testing, a grandparent DNA test can be performed by a DNA testing lab with experience in this type of analysis. The test shows whether or not a child is related to the grandparents—on the possible father’s parents’ side—and thereby helps to establish the identity of the child’s biological father. This same test can help determine maternity too, if needed.

Reasons to Take a Grandparent DNA Test

Many grandparents initiate this test because they are concerned that they might not be the actual biological grandparents of child/children! They are concerned, and simply want to know the truth. Being a grandparent requires emotional and financial support for many years, and if there is a question about the paternity of a grandchild, the grandparents want to know for sure. Aside from peace of mind, there may also be legal reasons for wanting to confirm a biological relationship.

Reasons to confirm paternity include:

  • Health concerns
  • Death of potential father
  • Custody issues
  • Heritage and inheritance concerns
  • Questionable paternity of child
  • Peace of mind

How It Works

Unlike a straight paternity test, this type of analysis is a bit more like putting together a DNA puzzle: when more participants contribute their DNA, the more pieces to the puzzle can be assembled to form a complete picture.

Who needs to provide DNA for a grandparent DNA test:

  • One or both parents of the possible father
  • The child
  • The mother of the child, if possible

The test is most accurate when there are two grandparents to test—both of the possible father’s parents. In the absence of one grandparent, the test can still be administered. However, it’s important to know the results may not be as conclusive as they need to be to establish paternity and/or maternity. If at all possible, the child’s mother should also participate to help strengthen the chances of obtaining conclusive results.

DNA is collected easily and quickly with simple, painless cheek swabs.


  • If you need results for legal reasons (inheritance or immigration, for example), at-home testing is not an option. For court-admissible results, you must call the lab ahead of time to arrange for a legal, witnessed test
  • If you do not have legal authority to act on behalf of a minor child, the burden is on you to obtain all necessary consents before submitting the minor child’s DNA for testing

The Test Can Help to Protect Grandparent Rights

As a paternal grandparent, you really don’t know whether your grandkids are truly yours. Although you love and cherish each child, nothing can replace the reassurance you get from knowing for sure if those children are biologically related to yout. Fortunately, you now have the option to request a grandparent DNA test to learn the facts.

There may be some reasons why the child’s mother refuses to allow a grandparent DNA test. In these cases, you may be able to petition the courts for the test to be administered.

Final Thoughts about a Grandparent DNA Test

Grandchildren are one of life’s greatest joys, but if you have any doubts about a biological relationship, it’s wise to ask some questions now in order to prevent a possible broken heart down the road. Contact us to make arrangements for a grandparent DNA test today. A kind, experienced representative from TheDNALab will be happy to explain the details with a simple and completely confidential phone call.