New Jersey is a particularly lucrative state in which to work as a forensic psychologist. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that forensic psychologists in the state were the fourth most highly paid in the country as of 2014.
A large number of New Jersey’s forensic psychologists work in Trenton’s Ann Klein Forensic Center is located there, which houses inmates deemed not guilty by reason of insanity. This 200-bed psychiatric hospital also serves people who have been declared incompetent to stand trial and those who require special security measures.
Mental illness treatment among New Jersey’s inmates has been a controversial issue for a number of years. In 2011, the New Jersey Department of Corrections used its medication roster to determine that 3,203 inmates suffered from schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or depression according to the American Association for Justice. This figure only includes prisoners sentenced through Superior Court.
The Union County Prosecutor’s Office altered its handling of selected nonviolent mentally ill defendants by starting a treatment program for them in 2005. Staff members such as forensic psychologists from the Trinitas Regional Medical Center were critical to the success of this program.
A 2011 analysis showed that the recidivism rate among defendants enrolled in this treatment program was almost two-thirds lower than the average for New Jersey. Recently other County Prosecutors have started adopting this approach.
New Jersey Forensic Psychologist Salaries
Shown below are the salaries for forensic psychologists at the Anne Klein Forensic Center from 2014. These represent level 2 positions for primary level supervisors:
- Maximum: $110,979
- Average: $104,370
- Minimum: $85,147
Half of those that held this position in 2014 earned the maximum salary shown.
The New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development provides the salaries of forensic psychologists as of 2013. The median salary for clinical psychologists in New Jersey was $76,750, while the median salary for those in the major counties in the state are shown below:
- Warren: $89,270
- Mercer: $80,150
- Atlantic: $77,450
- Cape May: $76,280
- Cumberland: $73,870
- Salem: $70,710
Job Growth Rates for Forensic Psychologists in New Jersey
The number of forensic psychologists in New Jersey is expected to increase by 2.7% between 2012 and 2022. This should result in an average of 120 positions a year becoming available in this field during this time frame.
The New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development expects a much higher rate of job growth for this field in a number of counties:
- Warren: 3%
- Bergen: 8%
- Morris: 4%
- Camden: 4%
- Somerset: 3%
- Monmouth: 7%
- Mercer: 0%
Forensic Psychologist Salaries in New Jersey’s Major Cities
Shown below is a detailed analysis of forensic psychologist salaries throughout New Jersey (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014):