A normal Power of Attorney terminates if and when the principal named becomes unable to act for one reason or another, such as the onset of Alzheimer's disease. A Durable Power of Attorney will remain in effect ("durable") even if a person becomes incapacitated. What distinguishes a Durable Power of Attorney from a regular Power of Attorney is special wording that states that the power survives the principal's incapacity.

Durable Powers of Attorney can be used for most everything but an Attorney-in-Fact can only provide services specified by the Durable Power of Attorney. It is important that Powers of Attorney be written clearly so that the Attorney-in-Fact and third parties know what the Attorney-in-Fact can and cannot do.

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