DNA testing analyzes the genetic material present in human cells and has been found to be over 99 percent accurate in verifying family relationships such as: parent/child, brother/sister, etc. The testing is entirely voluntary and all costs and expenses associated with it must be borne entirely by the passport applicant and/or his or her family. The results are typically available within a month (this varies by lab).
Do not order a DNA test kit until you have discussed your case with a consular officer.
Choose an Accredited Lab
You may use any DNA laboratory that is accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB) and that conducts buccal swab testing. Unless you have a compelling reason to do otherwise, you should choose the lab closest to your home.
For a List of AABB-accredited testing labs click here.
Please ensure that the DNA laboratory you choose:
- Can process buccal swabs;
- Is willing to process the testing for the relationship under question (not all tests are for paternity);
- Is willing to handle international shipments including providing the necessary customs clearance forms;
- and Will forward the buccal swab test kit to the Embassy with a pre-paid return envelope.
The lab will mail the test kit directly to the Embassy. The lab should send the test kit to:
U.S. Citizen Services
P. O. Box N-8197
Nassau, The Bahamas
Please DO NOT use a third party to select your U.S.-based lab, arrange appointments, or transport specimens, and at no time should the lab send you a testing kit. If this happens, please inform us immediately at firstname.lastname@example.org.
When the Embassy receives the testing kit, we will contact the applicant in writing or by telephone and schedule the appointment date for collecting the DNA sample. Appointments cannot be scheduled to collect the DNA specimen before the Embassy receives the test kit.
The applicant should arrive at the Consular Section at least 15 minutes prior to their appointment. Please note that cellular phones, blackberries, cameras and other electronic items are not allowed inside the Embassy.
Passport/Consular Report of Birth applicants must bring these documents to the DNA collection appointment at the Embassy:
- Original birth certificate and a photocopy of the same for the child.
- Original passports of the accompanying US citizen parent(s) of the child. No other form of ID for the U.S. citizen parent is accepted.
- One photograph of the child and accompanying US citizen parent(s).
All fees, including return shipping charges, must be paid by the applicant BEFORE the lab sends the kit to the Embassy.
After the Test:
The DNA test facility will send the results directly to the Embassy. We will contact you with the results.
Questions and Contact Information:
Telephone: 242 322 1181 (ask for American Citizen Services)
Fax: 242 356 7174