Collection Procedure for Forensic Drug Testing Under Chain of Custody

NOTE: The individual being tested is the DONOR.  The person monitoring at the collection site is the COLLECTOR.  The test is performed for a CLIENT, usually a company.

Collector ensures that the name and address of the Test Facility or Laboratory are on the top of the CCF and that the Specimen ID number on the top of the CCF matches the Specimen ID number on the labels/seals.


  1. The DONOR appears at the collection site.
  1. The COLLECTOR identifies the DONOR using social security number and driver’s license or social security number and another acceptable picture identification (ID).
  1. The COLLECTOR reminds the DONOR to keep a personal record of any current or recently discontinued medications, for future reference. A copy of the medications should not be sent to Warde Medical Laboratory. However, the Donor may provide a list of medications for the Medical Review Officer or the collection site to have on file.

Instructions for Completing the Drug Testing Custody and Control Form


  • Collector ensures that the required information is in STEP1 (on front page of COC). Collector enters a remark in STEP 2 if Donor refuses to provide his/her SSN or Employee ID number.
  • Collector gives collection container to Donor and instructs Donor to provide a specimen. Collector notes any unusual behavior or appearance of Donor in the remarks line in Step 2. If Donor conduct at any time during the collection process clearly indicates an attempt to tamper with the specimen, Collector notes the conduct in the remarks line in STEP 2 and takes action as required.


  • Collector checks specimen temperature within 4 minutes after receiving the specimen from Donor, and marks the appropriate temperature box in STEP 2. If temperature is outside the acceptable range, Collector enters a remark in STEP 2 and takes action as required.
  • Collector inspects the specimen and notes any unusual findings in the remarks line in STEP 2 and takes action as required.
  • Collector determines the volume of the specimen in the collection container. If the volume is acceptable, Collector proceeds with the collection. If the volume is less than required by Warde Medical Laboratory, Collector takes action as required and enters remarks in Step 2, discards Copy 1 and distributes remaining copies as required.


  • Donor watches Collector pour the specimen from the collection container into the specimen bottle(s), place the cap(s) on the specimen bottle(s), and affix the label(s)/Seal(s) on the specimen bottle(s).
  • Collector dates the specimen bottle label(s)/seal(s) after placement on the specimen bottle(s).
  • Donor initials the specimen bottle label(s)/seal(s) after placement on the specimen bottle(s).
  • Collector turns to Copy 2 (Medical Review Officer Copy) and instructs Donor to read and complete the certification statement in STEP 5 (signature, printed name, date, phone numbers and date of birth). If Donor refuses to sign the certification statement, Collector enters a remark in STEP 2 on Copy 1.


Collector completes STEP 4 on Copy 1 (signature, printed name, date, time of collection, and name of delivery service), places the sealed specimen bottle(s) and Copy 1 of the CCF in a leak-proof plastic bag, seals the bag, prepares the specimen package for shipment, and distributes the remaining CCF copies as required.


Incomplete submission of the information, refusal to provide a urine specimen, or substitution or adulteration of a specimen may result in delay or denial of your application for employment/appointment or may result in removal or other disciplinary action.

Test results may be disclosed to agency officials on a need-to-know basis. This may include the agency Medical Review Officer (MRO), the administrator of the Employee Assistance Program, and a supervisor with authority to take adverse personnel action.

Submission of your SSN is not required by law and is voluntary. Your refusal to furnish your number will not result in the denial of any right, benefit, or privilege provided by law. Your SSN is solicited for purposes of associating information in agency files relating to you and for purposes of identifying the specimen provided for testing. If you refuse to indicate your SSN, a substitute number or other identifier will be assigned, as required, to process the specimen.

Additional Steps for Collection Process

Unobserved Collection

  1. DONOR removes all unnecessary outer garments, e.g. coat and handbags. A security box may be made available for personal items. These items are left outside the rest room. (Dressing gowns may be provided in which case all outer clothing may be removed).
  1. COLLECTOR enters the restroom with the DONOR and, if necessary, places bluing agent in the toilet bowl and toilet tank, removes soap, and eliminates any source of hot water.
  1. DONOR washes hands and rinses thoroughly to remove soap, and dries.
  1. DONOR is asked to provide sample and then put lid firmly on, but not to flush the toilet.
  1. COLLECTOR gives container to DONOR and leaves the bathroom.
  1. DONOR provides the specimen in the privacy of the stall.
  1. DONOR affixes lid securely and brings the specimen to the COLLECTOR.
  1. COLLECTOR keeps the specimen in sight of the DONOR at all times, while checking:
  • The volume is at least 30 mL and the lid is on tight to prevent leaking.
  • Read and record temperature within 4 minutes (90°-100°F is acceptable).
  • Look for evidence of adulteration (color, turbidity, foaminess, etc.)
  1. If the specimen volume is less than 30 mL, or the temperature or appearance suggests adulteration, contact the collection site supervisor and refer to “Procedures if Sample is Unacceptable” section.
  1. The COLLECTOR attaches the security seal by starting the seal on one side of the container and bringing the seal over the top and down over the other side of the container. The Warde Medical Security Seal has the Specimen ID number corresponding with the Chain of Custody pre-printed on the seal. The seal ensures that the container and lid ID numbers are permanent.

NOTE:  Failure to properly seal the container compromises the security of the specimen. The laboratory will not test samples as Forensic Specimens if the security seal is compromised or is not present on the container. If the security seal is compromised or missing, the employer would not be able to defend a legal challenge to a positive result. The security seal is fairly fragile by design, and should be applied and written on with care. 

  1. Using a dark-colored (Blue or Black is preferred) medium ballpoint or sharp felt tip pen, have the DONOR write his/her DONOR initials on the security seal in the space provided.  If this step is done before affixing the seal to the sample, it must be applied to the sample immediately, in the presence of an observing DONOR.
  1. COLLECTOR checks to see that the donor initials are correct, then dates the security seal in the space provided.

NOTE:  Minor tears in the seal, near the bends, are somewhat unavoidable and are acceptable.  If the seal is damaged such that the lid could have been removed and replaced, it is not acceptable and will result in a “NO TEST .  If a seal is broken on both sides of the lid after adhering the seal in place, a second security seal is available on the Chain of Custody, the Donor should initial the second label and the collector should date this seal. If both seals are compromised, then have the DONOR select a new kit, label as before, transfer the sample, and complete steps 10–12 with a new seal.

  1. COLLECTOR completes the chain of custody by entering his/her signature on the Collection Affidavit.  The COLLECTOR also notes the date and time.
  1. COLLECTOR places the specimen in the self-adhesive bag and seals the bag.
  1. COLLECTOR folds and places the top two copies of the test request form in the unsealed pocket on the outside of the bag.

Collection Process – Observed

  1. This process may be followed either by special request of the client or initiated by the collection supervisor following an unacceptable unobserved collection.
  1. COLLECTOR of the same sex witnesses the passage of urine into the collection container and assures that a proper specimen, unadulterated, and with a volume of at least 30 mL is obtained from the DONOR. Indicate on form that it is an observed collection.

Procedures If Sample Is Unacceptable

  1. Inadequate volume
    1. If the volume is less than 30 mL, have the DONOR drink up to two 8 oz. glasses of water and collect a second sample after a reasonable wait.
    2. If recollection is noted, the original sample is discarded and a new kit is started with a new collection container, which is selected by the DONOR.
  1. Unacceptable specimen other than low volume
    1. Complete the processing of the first specimen for shipment to the laboratory, including the chain of custody.  Note the reason for judging the specimen unacceptable, in the COMMENTS space on the test request form.
    2. Contact the collection site supervisor.
    3. Allow the DONOR to choose a new collection kit. Use a new test request form. Follow the collection process beginning with “Pre-Collection” section, step 4.