Court-ordered Drug & Alcohol Testing

2 Sep 2021 | Drink Driving, Drugs

Drug and alcohol use plays a significant role in Family Law cases.

Types of Tests
Suppose an allegation of drug and alcohol abuse is made in parenting proceedings. In that case, orders for testing need to be sought at the earliest opportunity to substantiate those allegations to demonstrate what steps have been taken to reduce or eliminate any risk to a child.

Urine Testing
The advantage of using a urine test is that a wide range of substances is detectable. However, the detection window for some drugs varies. Given that most drugs are not detectable after less than five days, testing for longer-term use is generally ineffectual via this method.

Hair Testing
This method of testing has become more common in family law matters. The advantage of hair testing is that there is a longer window of detection and can provide information about a person’s pattern of alcohol or drug use instead of one-off or occasional use, which assists the Court in determining risk. A limitation of this method of testing is that recent or single drug use may not be detected.

Saliva Testing
A saliva test is less invasive than urine testing; however, the significant disadvantage is that the window of detection is much smaller than hair testing and some urine tests.

PEth Blood Testing
Phosphatidylethanol (PEth) is a very specific alcohol biomarker and provides the highest sensitivity for the detection of current regular alcohol consumption. The detection window is approximately one month.

We know that these tests have essential, lasting effects on vulnerable individuals and families. Our experienced collection teams are on-hand to make specimen collection as quick and comfortable as possible, and our laboratory partner is ready to offer expert analysis and answers to your questions throughout your case.

If you have questions relating to any of the information in this article, or you require advice concerning the use of drug and alcohol testing in family law matter, please reach out to us here.