The Women's Journal

Patience Is Key: Navigating A PI Timeline

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By Amanda Dobies, Esq.

The number one question I am asked by my clients pursuing a personal injury claim in Delaware is “How long does this process take until I obtain a settlement?”  Unfortunately, there is no single answer to this question. The timeline for resolving a personal injury claim in Delaware can vary widely depending on several factors.

First, the severity of injuries and the case complexity affects the timeline. If the matter involves relatively minor injuries and the fault of the accident is straightforward, the case may resolve quickly. On the other hand, if injuries are severe, requiring ongoing medical treatment, and fault of the accident is contested, the process could take much longer. It is typically not advisable to settle until one full year after the accident. Once a case is settled, a release must be signed with the insurance company. Once a release is signed, a claim will not be re-opened, even if it becomes apparent that the injuries are worse than originally believed. In the event that a client suffers permanent injury, a doctor will not be able to give an opinion regarding permanency unless a year has passed since the injury occurred and residual symptoms still occur. 

The negotiation process can also play a significant role in how long it takes to settle. Depending on how willing the other party is to negotiate, the process can take anywhere from a few months to several years of ongoing litigation. If negotiations are ultimately unsuccessful, your case may wind up going to trial, which will add additional time to the process.

Another factor to consider is the court’s schedule. Some courts are more backed up than others, and scheduling can be challenging. If multiple cases are scheduled for trial on the same day, a trial date could be “bumped,” meaning the parties may need to wait for the assigned judge to be available before the trial can begin. This adds additional time to the process.

Overall, it’s challenging to predict how long it will take to resolve your personal injury case in Delaware.

If you’re pursuing a personal injury claim in Delaware, it’s essential to consult with an experienced attorney as soon as possible. Your attorney can advise you on your legal options, help gather evidence to support your case and negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf. Having a skilled attorney on your side can help ensure that your case is resolved as quickly as possible.

If you have any questions or have been injured in an auto accident, reach out to an attorney at Kimmel Carter at 302-565-6100 for a free legal consultation.


Amanda Dobies is an associate attorney in the Newark office of Kimmel, Carter, Roman, Peltz & O’Neill, P.A. Mrs. Dobies brings 6 years of personal injury experience to the firm focusing her practice on motor vehicle accidents and work-related accidents. Amanda is a lifelong Delawarean, obtaining her undergraduate degree from the University of Delaware and law degree from Delaware Law School, where she graduated Cum Laude.

Amanda is committed to representing individuals and families whose lives have been changed as the result of an injury. Amanda previously worked as staff counsel for one of The Country’s top insurance companies, representing insureds through the litigation process. This insider’s perspective gives Amanda an upper hand when representing clients.


“Amanda handled my case, and she was a joy to work with. Her communication was always prompt and professional. She worked hard to make sure that I was compensated fairly. So glad I decided to work with this firm and I would highly recommend to anyone who needs representation.” ~S.J.

“A little over a year ago I sustained an injury at a local business and it became clear the business had little interest in reimbursing me for the medical bills, physical therapy and missed work time when I tried to negotiate on my own. Then I was referred to Amanda Dobies at the firm. Ms. Dobies was a perfect balance of knowledge, compassion and access to resources. During every interaction she was extremely professional and presented facts and the law in easily understandable terms. With Ms. Dobies assistance, I obtained a resolution and reimbursement of my costs. It is without hesitation that I would highly recommend her for legal needs within her area of expertise.” ~T.B.