My father died several years ago with no will, and my brother was appointed executor of the estate. In retrospect, that might not have been a good decision on my or my sister's part, since things are still not completely finalized yet. My brother has been dragging his feet on getting things finalized (needed paperwork forwarded to the lawyer), and I just found out why. He just told me that he borrowed what he considered to be his portion of the estate from the estate to prevent a foreclosure on his house...a fairly substantial amount. He said he'd hoped to get it replaced but has been unable to do so, and that he's putting together a spreadsheet to show us and the lawyer what the borrowed money was used for. Pardon my legal ignorance, but wouldn't this be considered embezzlement? Once the lawyer receives paperwork that shows money missing from the estate, wouldn't he be obligated to alert (state?) authorities about it? And who would get to decide whether charges should be filed against my brother? Is it up to my sister and I or is this decision out of our hands? And what would happen next? If charges are filed, would my sister or I then be asked to take over as executor? And if charges are filed, does this mean that the estate still cannot be settled until the money my brother took has been paid back? What if he is unable to do so? What happens to the balance of the estate?