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10-Year-Old Paternity Test Sparks Lawsuit

EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. (CN) - A laboratory's error deprived a girl of more than 10 years of emotional and economic support from her father, the girl and her mother claim in Madison County Court.

Sara Pate sued on behalf of her daughter, who was born on Aug. 30, 1996.

In September 1997, a paternity test performed by National Legal Laboratories erroneously excluded Gerald Spiller as the girl's father, the complaint states.

Pate claims National Legal failed to make sure the specimen was not contaminated. She says that additional testing in February 2008 proved Spiller was the girl's father.

Pate claims that due to the botched test, she has been deprived of financial support, assistance in raising her daughter and has suffered emotional distress. She claims her daughter has been deprived of the love and companionship of her father and also suffered emotional distress.

Orchid Cellmark, which acquired National Legal, is also named as a defendant. The plaintiffs are represented by J. Robert Edmonds of Alton, Ill.

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