How long a case will take to resolve in litigation (if no settlement is ever reached) is dependent on the (1) complexity of the case, (2) the amount of money at issue (i.e. the value of the case), and (3) the particular schedule of the attorney’s and the judge assigned to the case.
Despite these variables, there is a general answer to this question which includes one additional variable. Litigation occurs when one files a lawsuit. In Arizona, once a lawsuit is filed, you have ninety (90) days to serve the at-fault driver or person responsible for your injuries.
The time for service is entirely dependent upon how quickly the at-fault party can be served. It can take one week or more than 90 days. Once served, a defendant has 20 days to file an answer. The time for a case to resolve from the day the answer is due can take anywhere from 4 months to more than a year, depending on whether litigation means arbitration or trial (this is the one additional variable I referenced earlier).
In Arizona, a plaintiff must file a certificate of compulsory arbitration with the Complaint (again the Complaint commences litigation). This certificate determines whether the case is subject to arbitration or not subject to arbitration (arbitration v. trial). The difference is purely monetary. If the case is valued at $50,000 or less, the case is subject to arbitration and litigation will presumably last between 4-6 months from the time a defendant files an answer.
If the case is valued at more than $50,000, the case will ultimately be scheduled for a jury trial which would not typically occur for at least one year (often more) from the time the defendant files an Answer to the Complaint.