How much do forensic psychologists make?
Forensic psychologists comprise a small group of specialized human services psychologists who are often lumped into the "other psychologists" category when it comes to salary statistics from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The BLS reports that Other Psychologists, including forensic psychologists, earned a mean annual wage of $88,400 in May 2013, with the top 10 percent earning $117,090 or more, and the bottom 10 percent earning $42,550 or less.
Numerous factors also can influence forensic psychologists' salaries, including:
- The cases they're involved in
- The number of hours they work (many work part-time as consultants)
- The amount of experience or education they possess
- Who their employer is
BLS data also show that, as of May 2013, the top-paying states for the "other psychologists" category are:
- New Hampshire: $132,590 mean annual salary
- Minnesota: $123,600 mean annual salary
- Maryland: $104,770 mean annual salary
However, forensic psychologists' salaries may go the furthest in the top-paying metropolitan areas for this profession, both of which are in Florida: Pensacola-Ferry Pass-Brent and Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford. According to the Council for Community & Economic Research (C2ER), Florida's cost of living in the second quarter of 2014 was ranked 28th nationally, which is slightly better than Minnesota and far above than the New England states listed above, which rank among the most expensive states.