TITLE 15
Domestic Relations

CHAPTER 15-8
Uniform Law on Paternity

SECTION 15-8-11


§ 15-8-11 Parentage tests.

(a) In a proceeding under this chapter before trial, the court, upon application made by or on behalf of any party to the action, and supported by sworn affidavit, or on its own motion, shall order that the mother, child, alleged father, and any other party to the action submit to blood or tissue typing tests which may include, but are not limited to, tests of red cell antigens, red cell isoenzymes, human leukocyte antigens, serum proteins, DNA and other genetic testing, to determine whether the alleged father is likely to be, or is not, the father of the child. The sworn affidavit must include a statement alleging paternity and setting forth facts establishing a reasonable possibility of sexual contact during the probable period of conception or a statement denying paternity and setting forth facts establishing a reasonable possibility of the nonexistence of sexual contact during the probable period of conception. In a proceeding to establish paternity and/or support brought pursuant to the Rhode Island state plan for child and spousal support enforcement, in conformance with title IV, part D of the federal Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. § 651 et seq., if the alleged father denies paternity in response to a paternity complaint and provides a sworn affidavit as provided in this section, the division of taxation within the department of administration shall have the authority to administratively order the parties to attend a blood or tissue typing test and schedule blood or tissue typing test for the parties, of the type described in this section, without the necessity of making application to the court, and the parties shall attend and submit to a blood or tissue typing test under penalty of default in accordance with § 15-8-18.1.

(b) A blood or tissue typing test shall be made by a person the court determines is qualified as an examiner of blood or tissue types.

(c) The court shall fix or approve the compensation of any expert at a reasonable amount, and may direct the compensation to be paid by the state, or by any other party to the case, or by both, in the proportions and at the times the court prescribes, and that, after payment by a party, all or part or none of the payment shall be taxed as costs in the action. Before the making of a blood or tissue typing test, the court may order any part or all of the compensation paid in advance.

(d) The result of a blood or tissue typing test and, if a determination of exclusion of paternity cannot be made, a calculation of the probability of paternity made by a person the court determines is qualified as an examiner of blood or tissue types based on the result of a blood or tissue typing test shall be admissible in evidence in the trial of the case. A written report of the test results, including a calculation of the probability of paternity or a determination of exclusion of paternity, prepared by the duly qualified expert conducting the test, or by a duly qualified expert under whose supervision or direction the test and analysis have been performed, certified by an affidavit duly subscribed and sworn to by him or her before a notary public, may be introduced into evidence without the need for foundation testimony or other proof of authenticity or accuracy and without the necessity of calling the expert as a witness, unless an objection challenging the test procedures or results has been filed within ten (10) days before any hearing at which the results may be introduced into evidence and a cash bond posted with the registry of the family court in an amount sufficient to cover the costs of the duly qualified expert to appear and testify.

(e) If the results of the blood or tissue typing tests duly admitted into evidence establish a ninety-seven percent (97%) or greater probability of inclusion that a party is the biological father of the child, then that probability shall constitute a conclusive presumption of paternity.

(f) Any reference to "blood test" in this chapter means blood or tissue typing test.

History of Section.
(P.L. 1984, ch. 204, § 2; P.L. 1994, ch. 224, § 1; P.L. 1994, ch. 236, § 1; P.L. 1996, ch. 129, § 3; P.L. 1996, ch. 131, § 3; P.L. 1996, ch. 132, § 3; P.L. 1996, ch. 133, § 3; P.L. 1997, ch. 170, § 2; P.L. 2001, ch. 155, § 2; P.L. 2004, ch. 6, § 31.)