How Long Does Car Accident Arbitration Take?

When you receive an insultingly low settlement offer from the insurance company after an auto accident, you may be entitled to arbitration proceedings, where you can advocate for a more appropriate amount.

Your attorney will need to examine the details of your policy to determine whether arbitration is an option. In arbitration, you won’t have to go to court, but the final verdict given by the impartial arbitrator will likely be binding and unappealable. Read on to learn more about what you can expect from your car accident arbitration proceedings.


Many people choose to go to car accident arbitration rather than court because arbitration can lead to a resolution much more quickly than a trial. Generally speaking, it will take about two weeks for you to file your paperwork and initiate the arbitration proceedings. From there, it can take three weeks or more for an arbitrator to be selected.

Once your arbitrator has been selected, your case will go through discovery, which is when both sides exchange the information and evidence they’ve gathered that supports their case. Your arbitration hearing may come approximately two months after you’ve filed your paperwork.

Finally, at some point in the two weeks after the hearing, the arbitrator will likely deliver a decision. In all, you can expect your car crash arbitration proceedings to last for up to three months.

What You Can Expect in Your Hearing

Your hearing will work very similarly to a court trial. Both parties will make opening statements, present their evidence, and call witnesses. Both sides will then have the opportunity to cross-examine witnesses and make closing statements.

Once the arbitrator has heard both sides, the hearing will be adjourned until the arbitrator is able to come to a fair and reasonable decision. When the arbitrator issues the verdict, he or she will also discuss how the decision was reached. It’s important to remember that the award the arbitrator issues will likely be final. You may not have the opportunity to appeal the decision.

Call a Chicago Car Accident Lawyer

When you aren’t sure how to proceed after getting a lowball offer from the insurance company, speak with an experienced Chicago car accident lawyer at Lane Brown, LLC. You can claim your free case review by calling our office at 312-332-1400 or completing the contact form below.

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