What’s the difference between these legal docs?

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Q. What is the difference between a power of attorney and a durable power of attorney?
— Learning

A. Good question.

A durable power of attorney is one that has effect even when the principal is incapacitated, said Yale Hauptman, an estate planning attorney with Hauptman and Hauptman in Livingston.

“It must have language making clear that it remains in effect in that case,” he said. “If it does not, then it is a general power of attorney which ceases to have effect when the principal is incapacitated.”

In most of his elder law planning cases, it is when the principal is incapacitated that the power of attorney is most needed, Hauptman said.

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