It can potentially take years. My older brother was involved in a wreck with his 18-wheeler. Another trucker stalled out in the middle of the interstate, under icy conditions, at night, just on the other side of a hill, and failed to put reflectors or flares to warn traffic. You can see where this is going. My brother come over the top of the hill, saw the semi and tried to stop but 40 tons doesn't stop easy, he plowed into the back of the other semi forcing the nose and main part of the cab into the sleeper, with him trapped inside. He shattered his arm, femur, ribs, hand, is blind in one eye due to glass, displayed symptoms of PTSD.
That was in 2011, he's still waiting for his day in court or a settlement.