The success of a long term disability claim is dependent on proving that your symptoms are disabling. A diagnosis of a particular illness is not enough. You will need to establish that the symptoms that you suffer prevent you from performing the duties of your occupation. How do you do this? By submitting objective evidence, such as MRI's, SPECT scans and other test results; the opinions of your treating physicians, and by providing a statement explaining how your symptoms make you unable to do your job. We recommend that a claimant keep a contemporaneous diary of all symptoms. For instance, if you had a migraine headache on Monday, that should be put in your diary. If you could not get out of bed on Tuesday, that also should be placed in your diary, and so on and so on. By keeping a diary, you can be very specific. Specificity makes your symptoms more credible and allows them to be viewed and evaluated in context.
We also recommend that you bring copies of the new pages in your diary to each doctor visit so that the doctor puts it in your file. This enables the doctor to evaluate all of your symptoms, not just the ones you remember to mention at the visit. It also permits the doctor to keep more accurate treatment notes that reflect all of your current symptoms. This is very important for your claim because the insurance company will often review your doctor's notes as part of their evaluation of your claim.