A: You did not specify the court, so I'll assume that you mean the Illinois Supreme Court. Here is a good article: https://www.law360.com/articles/753921/the-illinois-supreme-court-in-2015-a-statistical-analysis
"Average time under submission for non-unanimous decisions on the civil docket was 152.6 days, a 21.2 percent decrease over the previous year. Non-unanimous criminal cases were under submission for an average of 159.6 days — an improvement of 14.2 percent over 2014. Days under submission were essentially static for unanimous decisions — 104.8 days for civil cases (a slight increase from 2014) and 120.5 days for criminal cases. Measured from the date cases began — whether by allowance of a petition for leave to appeal or filing of a notice of direct appeal — the court continued to move its docket reasonably quickly. Unanimous civil cases were before the Court for an average of 281.3 days from allowance to decision, a slight improvement from 2014, and 367 days for non-unanimous civil cases. Criminal cases were pending for slightly longer. Unanimously decided criminal cases were pending for an average of 420.5 days from grant to decision, while non-unanimous criminal cases were pending an average of 358.3 days."
A: The common way is to set up a limited liability or a corporation and to maintain the legal requirement of that entity so that the corporate structure cannot be "pierced." Here is the IRS's guide on LLCs, which I see most often with startups: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/limited-liability-company-llc