Criminal Justice Degrees Guide

Criminal Justice Job Earnings

What is Your Earning Potential?

Are you thinking about getting your degree in criminal justice? There are a multitude of careers to choose from once you have earned your degree. Many individuals choose to go into police work, detective work or Federal agent and security positions. While you may not become a millionaire in most professions related to criminal justice, most often you can feel confident that you will earn a comfortable salary in the specific area you choose. And while the profession can be a dangerous and stressful one, the feeling of doing good things for the community or for individuals is one that most people within the profession enjoy. As with any other industry or profession, as you move up in the ranks and earn more experience and further your education, your earning potential will increase accordingly and provide you with more options.

What does the US Department of Labor Say About Criminal Justice Earning Potential?

According to the US Department of Labor criminal justice earning potential is good. “Police and sheriff’s patrol officers had median annual earnings of $42,270 in 2002. Median annual earnings were $47,090 in State government, $42,020 in local government, and $41,600 in Federal Government. In 2002, median annual earnings of police and detective supervisors were $61,010. Median annual earnings were $78,230 in Federal Government, $64,410 in State government, and $59,830 in local government. In 2002, median annual earnings of detectives and criminal investigators were $51,410. Median annual earnings were $66,500 in Federal Government, $47,700 in local government, and $46,600 in State government.”

Note that, “Federal law provides special salary rates to Federal employees who serve in law enforcement. Additionally, Federal special agents and inspectors receive law enforcement availability pay (LEAP) – equal to 25 percent of the agent’s grade and step – awarded because of the large amount of overtime that these agents are expected to work.”

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