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Occupational Therapist (OT) Salary (United States)

Occupational Therapists in the United States can expect to earn an average of $34.45 per hour. Geography and tenure each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. A fair number report receiving medical coverage from their employers and the greater part collect dental insurance. The vast majority of Occupational Therapists (82 percent) who responded to the survey are women. Work is enjoyable for Occupational Therapists, who typically claim high levels of job satisfaction. Figures cited in this summary are based on replies to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
Occupational Therapist (OT) Salary (?
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.
)
$45,372 - $79,197
(Median)
45K
52K
62K
71K
79K
MEDIAN: $61,534
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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Occupational Therapist (OT) Salary (?
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.
)
$25.75 - $45.95
(Median)
26
34
40
46
MEDIAN: $34.00
10%
50%
75%
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$31K$62K$93K
Salary
$45,372 - $79,197  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $4,818  
Profit Sharing
$50.00 - $900  
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).
)
$49,986 - $91,582  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 719
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$22$44$66
Hourly Rate
$25.75 - $45.95  
   
Overtime
$12.82 - $66.00  
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$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $4,818  
   
Profit Sharing
$50.00 - $900  
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).
)
$49,986 - $91,582  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 780
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Job Description for Occupational Therapist (OT)

An occupational therapist (OT) specializes in certain therapies that are intended to relate directly with improving a person's ability to function in daily living and working activities. OTs frequently aid patients in recovering their motor skills and they may help them learn how to once again independently dress themselves, cook, use a computer, write, and many different activities requiring strength and dexterity of the hands and fingers.
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Occupational Therapist (OT) Tasks
  • Consult with rehabilitation team to select activity programs and coordinate with other therapeutic activities.
  • Help clients improve decision making, abstract reasoning, memory, sequencing, coordination and perceptual skills using computer programs.
  • Select and recommend activities that will help individuals learn work and life-management skills consistent with their needs and capabilities.
  • Record prognosis, treatment, response and progress in patient's chart or computer database.
  • Consult with rehabilitation team to select activity programs and coordinate with other therapeutic activities.

Common Career Paths for Occupational Therapist (OT)

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Though not the most common occurrence, Occupational Therapists sometimes become Rehabilitation Directors, where the average income is $87K per year. Occupational Therapists moving up in their careers tend to step into positions as Licensed Registered Occupational Therapists or Registered Occupational Therapists. The median paychecks in those roles are $3K higher and $2K higher, respectively.

Occupational Therapist (OT) Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Occupational Therapist (OT)

Survey results suggest that Occupational Therapists use a fairly large toolkit of professional skills. Most notably, skills in Geriatrics, Home Health/Home Care, Rehabilitation, and Certified Hand Therapist are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 5 percent and 10 percent. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Pediatrics. It is often found that people who know Geriatrics are also skilled in Acute Care.

Pay by Experience Level for Occupational Therapist (OT)

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For Occupational Therapists, experience does not seem to be a major factor in determining pay. Workers in their first five years can expect to earn $63K, but people who have been around for five to 10 years earn a noticeably bigger sum of $71K. People with 10 to 20 years of experience make an average of about $75K in this role. Veterans who have worked for more than two decades do tend to make the most in the end; the median pay for this group is $81K.

Pay Difference By Location

Seattle
up arrow 12%
Los Angeles
up arrow 9%
Indianapolis
up arrow 7%
Dallas
up arrow 7%
Cleveland
up arrow 6%
Pittsburgh
up arrow 4%
Baltimore
up arrow 3%
Philadelphia
up arrow 1%
Chicago
0%
Denver
0%
National Average
$67,000
New York
up arrow 2%
Houston
up arrow 2%
Atlanta
up arrow 4%
Miami
up arrow 7%
Milwaukee
up arrow 18%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
For Occupational Therapists, Seattle provides a pay rate that is 12 percent greater than the national average. Occupational Therapists will also find cushy salaries in Los Angeles (+9 percent), Dallas (+7 percent), Indianapolis (+7 percent), and Cleveland (+6 percent). The lowest-paying market is Milwaukee, which sits 18 percent below the national average. A couple other locations with smaller-than-average paychecks include Miami (7 percent lower) and Atlanta (4 percent lower).

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Experience Affects Occupational Therapist (OT) Salaries

National Average
$67,000

Skills That Affect Occupational Therapist (OT) Salaries

Orthopedics
up arrow 3%
Certified Hand Therapist (CHT)
up arrow 3%
National Average
$67,000
Acute Care
up arrow 2%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied Image
Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5 based on 174 votes.

Gender

Female
82%
female alumni
 
Male
18%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
18%
1-4 years
41%
5-9 years
15%
10-19 years
19%
20 years or more
7%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 79% dental benefits Dental: 66%
vision benefits Vision: 51% employee benefits None: 19%