Delay means the act of postponing or slowing. For example, the counsel asked continuance solely for the purpose of delaying the case. It also means an instance at which something is postponed or slowed. For example, the delay in starting the trial made it difficult for all the witnesses to attend. It also refer to the period during which something is postponed or slowed.
In Civil law delay refers to the period within which a party to a suit must take some action, such as perfecting an appeal or responding to a written-discovery request.