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Principles of Forensic DNA for Officers of the Court

How Long Will It Take and When Will the Results Be Available?

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National Institute of Justice (NIJ) (see reuse policy).

Many forensic laboratories throughout the country have a backlog of DNA casework that can range from months to more than a year. Once testing begins, the length of time necessary to complete the analysis is based on the complexity of the case (i.e., from weeks to months). Testing status updates should be requested by law enforcement or prosecution and relayed to the victim/survivor.

It is important for law enforcement and/or prosecution to communicate with the forensic laboratory to determine which items of evidence need to be analyzed and, consequently, how long it might take to obtain DNA analysis results. For more information on DNA evidence testing, see Module 3, Practical Issues Specific to DNA Evidence.

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