Median pay for Mental Health Therapists in the United States is around $42K per year. The most important factor affecting compensation for this group is the specific employer, followed by the particular city and years of experience. Job satisfaction is high and work is enjoyable for most Mental Health Therapists. Women make up the vast majority of Mental Health Therapists (82 percent) who answered the questionnaire. A fair number report receiving medical coverage from their employers and more than half collect dental insurance. Figures cited in this summary are based on replies to PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$33,234 - $58,267
(Median)
$33K
$42K
$58K
MEDIAN: $42,035
10%
50%
90%

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$15.38 - $35.26
(Median)
$15
$22
$35
MEDIAN: $21.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$21K$42K$63K
Salary
$33,234 - $58,267  
   
Bonus
$252.83 - $4,750  
Profit Sharing
$720  
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).
)
$33,056 - $61,717  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 1,742
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$19$38$57
Hourly Rate
$15.38 - $35.26  
   
Hourly Tips
$7.41  
Overtime
$21.85 - $56.38  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$252.83 - $4,750  
   
Profit Sharing
$720  
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).
)
$33,056 - $61,717  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 613
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Job Description for Mental Health Therapist

The descriptor "mental health therapist" includes a variety of professionals that conduct therapy as part of their daily responsibilities, such as clinical psychologists, marriage and family therapists, school therapists, social workers, and general therapists. Therapy includes the use of psychological methods - such as cognitive behavioral therapy and psychoanalysis - to help patients overcome behavioral and psychological obstacles and problems. Techniques used by mental health therapist include cognitive-behavioral therapy, word association, and a wide variety of psychological tests, among many others. A mental health therapist can work in their own practice or for a particular company or organization. As part of a company, the therapist may focus on employees' problems and how they affect productivity and job performance.

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Mental Health Therapist Tasks

  • Monitor for and intervene in crisis situations.
  • Document and report on interactions, concerns, treatment, and attendance.
  • Interact with clients, provide therapy, and suggest specific services.
  • Write progress notes and coordinate with other care providers.

Common Career Paths for Mental Health Therapist


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Mental Health Therapists who go on to become Clinical Directors may see their salaries climb quite a bit. Median pay for Clinical Directors is $72K annually. Mental Health Therapists typically move into roles as Licensed Clinical Social Workers or Clinical Supervisors, and those positions pay $9K more and $10K more, respectively.

Mental Health Therapist Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Mental Health Therapist


Mental Health Therapists fill the offices of leading firms Community Mental Health Center, Universal Health Services, Inc., Catholic Charities, Centerstone, and Pacific Clinics. Heading up the field in terms of compensation, Pacific Clinics offers the most; Mental Health Therapists earn $49K on average there. Mental Health Therapists can also look forward to large paychecks at Behavioral Health Group ($43K), Catholic Charities ($41K), and Universal Health Services, Inc. ($40K).

Others at the bottom of the scale for this job include Valley Cities Counseling and Consultation at $36K, Adult and Child Mental Health at $37K, and Community Mental Health Center, where $37K is the norm.

Popular Skills for Mental Health Therapist


Mental Health Therapists report using a deep pool of skills on the job. Most notably, facility with Clinical Supervision, Psychotherapy, and Clinical Psychology are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 27 percent, 21 percent, and 6 percent, respectively. Skills that pay less than market rate include Crisis intervention, Individual therapy, and Assessment. For most people, competency in Case Management indicates knowledge of Clinical Psychology.

Pay by Experience Level for Mental Health Therapist

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


Experience does not seem to be a strong driver of pay increase in this role. Survey participants with less than five years' experience pocket $41K on average, but those with five to 10 years of experience enjoy a much bigger median of $46K. After working for 10 to 20 years, Mental Health Therapists make a median salary of $50K. More than 20 years of experience mean a somewhat bigger median paycheck of $53K, but it's not much more than what less experienced people make.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $42,928

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

For those looking to make money, Mental Health Therapists in Los Angeles enjoy an exceptional pay rate, 17 percent above the national average. Mental Health Therapists will also find cushy salaries in New York (+14 percent), Tampa (+7 percent), Portland (+7 percent), and Phoenix (+5 percent). Pittsburgh is home to the smallest salaries in the field, lagging the national average by 17 percent. St. Louis and Chicago are a couple other places where companies are known to pay below the median — salaries are 7 percent lower and 3 percent lower, respectively.

Mental Health Therapist Reviews

What is it like working as a Mental Health Therapist?

Mental Health Therapist in Littleton:
"Rewarding In Helping People."
Pros: That I get to help others dive into life and live life more fully and abundantly.
Cons: It can be stressful at times.

Mental Health Therapist in Marietta:
"Entry Level Therapist."
Pros: Working with children and their families and being hands on with them. Teaching families how to communicate and work through problems effectively.
Cons: The amount of paperwork can be overwhelming.

Mental Health Therapist in Seattle:
"Work Flexibility."
Pros: Rewarding to help people who are under served and create a difference in clients life.
Cons: Hours of paperwork and travel time to meet the needs of the clients.

Related Job Salaries

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Experience Affects Mental Health Therapist Salaries




National Average
$43,000


Skills That Affect Mental Health Therapist Salaries

Clinical Supervision
up arrow 27%

Psychotherapy
up arrow 21%



Substance Abuse
up arrow 2%

Bilingual
up arrow 2%

Counseling
0%

Diagnosis and Treatment Planning
0%

Group Therapy
0%

Patient Counseling
0%

National Average
$43,000

Case Management
up arrow 2%

Assessment
up arrow 6%

Family Practice
up arrow 6%

Individual therapy
up arrow 10%

Crisis intervention
up arrow 17%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 265 votes.

Gender

Female
82 %
Male
18 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
4%
1-4 years
51%
5-9 years
22%
10-19 years
15%
20 years or more
8%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 78%
dental benefits
Dental: 64%
medical benefits
Vision: 55%
dental benefits
None: 19%
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