Mary Jane Saunders, TEP


As a member of the firm’s Wills, Estates & Trusts team, Mary Jane works with clients to develop their estate plans to ensure their personal goals and needs are met. Whether dealing with basic planning needs or complex tax, estate and trust matters, Mary Jane helps clients navigate the legal, financial and familial issues that arise. Mary Jane holds the prestigious professional designation of Trust and Estate Practitioner (TEP) from STEP Canada and knows that an effective estate plan cannot be achieved without comprehensive discussions around the many aspects that impact an individual’s plan, both now and in the future. Mary Jane works diligently with clients to ensure that their estate plans do not become overridden by the often overlooked implications of taxes and other legal claims.

In addition to assisting clients with their estate plans, Mary Jane also provides advice to clients as they navigate through estate administration and appears in court for estate related matters, including representation applications pursuant to the Adult Capacity and Decision-making Act.
Whatever the area, Mary Jane’s objective is always to identify the goals of her clients and to develop a practical, timely plan to achieve those goals as smoothly as possible.

Mary Jane moved to Pictou County in 2012 after completing her law degree at the University of New Brunswick and a commerce degree at Saint Mary’s University. Mary Jane also completed the STEP Canada Diploma Program, through which she joins a global professional association for practitioners who specialise in family inheritance and succession planning.

  • trusts, including discretionary family trusts, testamentary trusts, Henson trusts, alter ego/joint partner trusts, asset protection trusts
  • tax-effective estate planning, including extensive experience planning for parents of disabled children
  • succession planning for family businesses
  • probate and tax planning for estates and beneficiaries
  • estate and incapacity planning
  • residential real estate
  • Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society
  • Pictou County Barristers’ Society
  • Canadian Bar Association
  • Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP)
  • Member, NSBS Professional Standards Committee for Wills
  • Past President, Summer Street Industries Society
  • Past Board Member, DeCoste Entertainment Society

Mary Jane has been a guest speaker for groups such as the Canadian Bar Association, Nova Scotia Teachers Union and Alzheimer’s Society, as well as other community groups.

  • Bar Admission: Nova Scotia, 2012
  • LL.B. (University of New Brunswick, 2011)
  • B.Com (Saint Mary’s University, 2005)
  • Obtained TEP status, Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners, 2017