A sad fact of life is that there are some families where money and material goods, and not good relationships, are prizes that people feel entitled to based on genetics. For people with estates of any notable size, including moderate estates that you might not initially think would be subject to disputes, setting up a will and planning an estate can sometimes be more complicated because of these fractious relationships. When you've got people fighting over what they'll get and trying to convince you to include or exclude certain people, you need to proceed with caution.
Be Careful if You Start Feeling Angry
You're no doubt going to feel angry at some of the behavior. You get to decide who gets what—or if someone gets nothing—but you must make the decisions in a calm frame of mind. If you make your will while extremely angry at a person you cut out, for example, that person could potentially challenge your will and get part of your estate. You have to be in a level-headed state when you plan your estate if you want a better chance of your decisions sticking.
Set up Power of Attorney Now
As you create your will, also create plans for your life if you reach a stage where you can't do much on your own and need someone to take over. By setting up a power of attorney document now, you can at least be assured that, if something happens to you, you'll be in good hands and not the hands of people who you do not trust. If you don't have anyone you think you can trust, then you need to speak with an estate-planning attorney as soon as possible.
Please Enlist the Help of an Estate Lawyer
Whether or not you already have a power of attorney set up, you should not approach setting up your will alone. If you want an airtight will that is nearly impossible to challenge, you'll need help from an estate lawyer. The lawyer can help you with wording that is specific and as neutral-seeming as possible; they can also help you plan for potential challenges and let you know whether you need to keep the will's contents essentially secret or let everyone know what's in it while you're still alive.
Estate planning can be complicated even for small estates, but bad family relations definitely make things worse. You'll need a good estate-planning attorney to help you out when it comes time to draw up your will.
For more information about wills, contact a local professional.