In order for a lawyer to reach a settlement with an insurance company on your behalf, the lawyer needs to fully understand your case. Your lawyer must examine the incident, how it happened and who caused it. The lawyer must also consider the nature of your injuries and obtain all of your medical records from all relevant medical providers. The lawyer must also examine your lost earnings or any other out of pocket expenses. If Medicare, Medicaid or workers compensation has paid any medical expenses or lost earnings these are liens against any recovery that should also be considered. A lien means the entity that paid certain expenses following your injury is entitled to be reimbursed for those expenses. Once your lawyer is armed with all of this information, your lawyer should be able to consider it against other cases similar to yours to place a fair dollar value on your claim.