Forensic Psychologist Salary

Forensic Psychologists in the United States can expect wages of $61K per year on average. Career duration and the particular city each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. A large number report receiving medical coverage from their employers and the greater part collect dental insurance. There are more female Forensic Psychologists who answered the questionnaire than male, making up 64 percent.

$36,039 - $98,313
(Median)
$36K
$61K
$98K
MEDIAN: $60,943
10%
50%
90%

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$14.79 - $128.19
(Median)
$15
$40
$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
$36,039 - $98,313  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $14,191  
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).
)
$37,130 - $117,967  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 214
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 - $128.19  
   
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 - $14,191  
   
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).
)
$37,130 - $117,967  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 37
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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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Survey results show that Forensic Psychologists typically report just a few professional skills. Most notably, facility with Clinical Psychology and Forensic Psychology are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 30 percent and 16 percent, respectively. Clinical Psychology and Forensic Psychology are correlating skills — those who know the former usually know the latter.

Pay by Experience Level for Forensic Psychologist

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


For many Forensic Psychologists, experience and pay levels seem to be correlated; more years in the business generally lead to more money. Salaries for inexperienced workers average out to $75K, and those with five to 10 years' experience earn a higher median of $59K. The average pay reported by folks with 10 to 20 years of experience is around $84K. Six-figure salaries aren't unusual for professionals who have achieved more than 20 years of experience; median compensation for this group sits in the range of $117K.

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Experience Affects Forensic Psychologist Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 89%

Experienced
up arrow 36%

Mid-Career
up arrow 20%

National Average
$62,000

Entry-Level
up arrow 6%

Skills That Affect Forensic Psychologist Salaries

Clinical Psychology
up arrow 30%


National Average
$62,000

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 28 votes.

Gender

Female
64 %
Male
36 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
11%
1-4 years
49%
5-9 years
15%
10-19 years
14%
20 years or more
10%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 81% dental benefits Dental: 62%
vision benefits Vision: 46% employee benefits None: 17%
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