Powers of appointment may be classified as either general or special. Under this classification a power is said to be a special power when the donee has the right to exercise it only in favor of a limited group of persons of which he himself is not a member.

In considering special powers it is helpful to subdivide them into two separate groups, one being termed exclusive and the other nonexclusive powers. In a factual situation where the intent of the donor is such that the donee of the power has the right to exclude any of the objects, it is said that the power through which he acts is an exclusive one. Conversely, if it appears that a share should be given to each of the objects, the donee does not have a right of exclusion, and the power is said to be nonexclusive.