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Forensic Psychologist Salary

Average Forensic Psychologists in the United States make around $61K per year. Experience level and the particular city each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. More than half of Forensic Psychologists (65 percent) survey participants are women. Medical benefits are awarded to a large number, and the greater part earn dental coverage. Job satisfaction is high and work is enjoyable for most Forensic Psychologists.

$35,856 - $99,405
(Median)
$36K
$61K
$99K
MEDIAN: $60,692
10%
50%
90%

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$14.79 - $128.80
(Median)
$15
$41
$130
MEDIAN: $40
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$35,856 - $99,405  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $14,142  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$36,769 - $121,025  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 209
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50$100$150
Hourly Rate
$14.79 - $128.80  
   
Overtime
$0.00 - $10.50  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$100K$200K$300K
Bonus
$0.00 - $14,142  
   
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$36,769 - $121,025  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 37

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United States (change)


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Job Description for Forensic Psychologist

Forensic Psychology is a professional career that is a specialty focus of the broader Psychology field. Forensic Psychologists are responsible for the evaluation and assessment of adults and children involved in legal cases, including mental health testing, chemical dependency evaluations, collateral contact interviews, and the administration and interpretation of personality tests. This may include determinations of psychological stability and/or diagnosis of mental illness as it relates to court proceedings, including the determination of an individual's ability to stand trial. A Forensic Psychologist may also be involved in assisting with jury selection and may assist with court case strategy. They also provide expert opinions, testimony, and briefs regarding the psychology of defendants. Forensic Psychologists provide services that are both clinical and forensic-related, and may provide treatment recommendations for those undergoing evaluation. Some Forensic Psychologists work with police or sheriffs' departments, providing mental health evaluations or advocacy in the field as needed. Others work primarily in the courthouse, providing professional, expert testimony to relevant court cases. Other responsibilities may include interviewing individuals related to court cases, gathering information about the mental health or psychological history of individuals, special projects or assignments such as department committees, legal consultations, community outreach, professional education, special research projects, and oversight and training of graduate students or interns. Forensic Psychologists work primarily independently or with the oversight of a superior Forensic Psychologist. A Forensic Psychologist usually has an advanced degree in psychology, either at a Master or Doctorate level. Specialized education is also required, frequently in the Criminal Justice field.


Forensic Psychologist Tasks

  • Provide services that are both clinical and forensic related.
  • Provide expert opinion, testimony and briefs on the psychology of defendants.
  • Assist in jury selection and case strategy.
  • Provide treatment recommendations.

Forensic Psychologist Job Listings

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Forensic Psychologists typically list a handful of skills they use on the job. Most notably, facility with Clinical Psychology and Forensic Psychology are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 29 percent and 18 percent, respectively. Aptitude in Clinical Psychology tends to also indicate an understanding of Forensic Psychology.

Pay by Experience Level for Forensic Psychologist

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Experience seems to be a major factor in determining the incomes of Forensic Psychologists. Salaries for inexperienced workers average out to $76K, and those with five to 10 years' experience earn a higher median of $57K. People with 10 to 20 years of experience make an average of about $85K in this role. Seasoned workers who boast more than two decades of relevant experience enjoy a median salary of $115K, which is substantially larger than the medians reported by folks with fewer years on their resumes.

Related Job Salaries

United States (change)

Experience Affects Forensic Psychologist Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 85%

Experienced
up arrow 37%

Mid-Career
up arrow 23%

National Average
$62,000

Entry-Level
up arrow 8%

Skills That Affect Forensic Psychologist Salaries

Clinical Psychology
up arrow 29%


National Average
$62,000

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 31 votes.

Gender

Female
65 %
Male
35 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
12%
1-4 years
48%
5-9 years
15%
10-19 years
15%
20 years or more
11%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 81% dental benefits Dental: 61%
vision benefits Vision: 46% employee benefits None: 17%
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