Occupational Therapist Salary

Occupational therapists employed in the United States generally report earning salaries in the range from $49,858 to $92,511 a year including bonuses, which can amount to up to $3,050 a year according to the salary information provided by Payscale.

With significant work experience, these professionals typically move on to roles of senior occupation therapists, which pay between $65,400 and $100,603 annually including bonuses, which can amount to up to $3,064 a year according to Payscale’s salary data.



Based on the data provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 10% of occupational therapists earn $107,070 a year or more, and the 10% on the lower end of the pay scale report earning salaries of up to $50,500 a year.

25% of these professionals earn up to $62,510 annually, and 75% are paid up to $90,270 a year according to the BLS data.

Licensed Occupational Therapists typically earn an annual pay in the range from $41,217 to $80,176, professionals with the qualification of Occupational Therapist Registered (OTR) generally make between $44,766 and $76,532 a year, and therapists with the certification of Occupational Therapist Registered/Licensed (OTR/L) are usually paid an annual wage in the range from $50,786 to $86,249 according to the salary figures reported by Payscale.

Average salary

The average salary for occupational therapists working in the United States is $68,346 a year according to Payscale’s salary data, $78,595 a year according to Salary.com, and $66,931 according to Jobstat. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports a mean annual wage of $76,400 and a median yearly salary of $75,400 for this profession.

Senior occupational therapists earn a median annual salary of $81,537 according to Payscale and $79,736 according to Jobstat. Licensed and registered occupational therapists earn a median pay of $71,008 a year according to Jobstat’s data, with the highest annual income recorded being $96,299 and the lowest, $53,995.


occupational therapy salary,occupational therapist average salary
Image: Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
As reported by Salary.com, 10% of occupational therapists earn $91,763 a year or more, while the 10% of professionals on the lower end of the pay scale are paid up to $65,887 a year. 25% of therapists earn up to $71,943 a year, and 75% have annual salaries of up to $85,487.

Jobstat reports that the highest yearly salary recorded for this occupation is $90,835 and the lowest is $49,379. Licensed occupational therapists earn an average annual pay of $71,359 a year, while registered occupational therapists make $70,465 a year on average.

Based on the salary information reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the top paying industries for occupational therapists are home health care services, where these professionals earn $86,850 a year on average, nursing care facilities (skilled nursing facilities), where the median annual salary for this occupation is $83,180, and management, scientific, and technical consulting services, where occupational therapists are paid $83,050 a year on average. Professionals working in employment services earn $81,830 a year on aveage, and those employed by insurance carriers are paid an average annual income of $79,560 according to the BLS.

Occupational therapists working at general medical and surgical hospitals earn around $75,510 a year, those employed by elementary and secondary schools are paid $68,440 a year on average, and professionals working at offices of other health practitioners make $77,570 annually on average. Occupational therapists employed at specialty hospitals (not including psychiatric and substance abuse hospitals) earn an average annual salary of $77,790 according to the data reported by the BLS.

Starting salary

Occupational therapists who are in their first year on the job typically report earning an annual pay in the range from $43,850 to $70,630 according to the salary data provided by Payscale. Therapists with less than a year of experience generally earn an hourly wage in the range from $23.34 to $39.86 based on Payscale’s data.

Salary range



Occupational therapists’ annual salaries vary depending on a wide range of factors, including work experience. Professionals with 1 to 4 years of experience generally earn an income in the range from $40,630 to $76,788 a year, and those with 5 to 9 years of work experience typically make between $39,911 and $80,821 annually.

Occupational therapists with 10 to 19 years of work experience under their belt are usually paid between $50,320 and $89,412 a year, and professionals with 20 or more years of work experience in occupational therapy generally report earning an annual pay in the range from $58,183 to $98,000 according to the salary statistics provided by Payscale. Women generally report earning between $48,641 and $80,296 a year, and men are typically paid between $50,485 and $87,550 annually according to Payscale.

Occupational therapists’ yearly income also varies from industry to industry. Therapists working in the health care sector typically earn between $48,564 and $83,272 a year, those working at occupational therapists’ offices are typically paid between $50,876 and $80,811 annually, and professionals employed in the rehabilitation industry generally report earning an annual pay in the range from $38,978 to $77,873 according to Payscale.

Therapists working in home health care make between $40,695 and $85,552 a year, and those employed in public K-12 education are paid between $45,885 and $76,367 a year. Professionals working at hospitals are usually paid between $45,302 and $76,026 a year, and those employed at nursing homes generally earn salaries in the range from $48,479 to $77,281 a year according to Payscale’s salary data.

Salary by state

Occupational therapists’ annual pay also depends on geographical location, and can vary significantly from state to state. Therapists based in New York typically report earning salaries in the range from $40,000 to $80,000 a year, those working in California are usually paid between $50,335 and $95,914 annually, and professionals employed in Texas generally make between $48,479 and $86,027 a year according to the salary data reported by Payscale.

Occupational therapists working in Illinois are typically paid between $38,783 and $77,281 a year, and those based in Florida earn from $58,175 to $86,162 a year. Professionals working in Pennsylvania are paid between $49,767 and $86,554 a year, and therapists employed in Tennessee generally report earning an annual pay in the range from $30,201 to $89,396 according to Payscale’s data.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reveals that the top paying states for occupational therapists are Nevada, where these professionals earn an average annual salary of $105,290, followed by New Jersey, where therapists earn around $86,680 annually, and California, where the median salary for this profession is $86,380 a year. Occupational therapists employed in the District of Columbia make $85,260 a year on average, and professionals based in Texas are paid around $84,810 a year according to the BLS salary data.

Occupational therapists working in New York earn an average annual pay of $74,450, those based in Florida are paid around $79,560 a year, and professionals employed in Pennsylvania earn around $70,450 a year.

Therapists based in Maine make $66,370 a year on average, those employed in Massachusetts are paid around $74,450 annually,and professionals working in Colorado earn an average yearly income of $75,680.

Occupational therapists in Connecticut have a median yearly salary of $83,640, and professionals based in New Hampshire earn around $65,980 a year according to the salary information reported by the BLS.

Salary by city

Occupational therapists’ annual wage can also vary from city to city. Therapists working in New York typically report earning a yearly income in the range from $35,745 to $83,327, those employed in Chicago are generally paid between $44,621 and $70,589 annually, and professionals based in Atlanta earn salaries in the range from $56,165 to $66,129 a year.

Occupational therapists based in Las Vegas are typically paid between $54,000 and $72,945 a year, and those working in Houston earn between $54,045 and $71,216 annually. Professionals working in Philadelphia usually report earning an annual pay in the range from $60,000 to $85,000, and those based in Tulsa are typically paid an income in the range from $46,000 to $62,750 a year based on the salary data provided by Payscale.

Hourly wage

The average hourly rate for occupational therapists working in the United States is typically in the range between $25.33 and $46.32 per hour according to the salary figures reported by Payscale, with overtime rates generally ranging from $0.35 to $67.16 per hour.

The hourly wage varies depending on work experience among other factors. Occupational therapists with 1 to 4 years of experience generally earn between $24.54 and $43.53 per hour, and those with 5 to 9 years of work experience are typically paid between $28.44 and $49.60 per hour. Professionals with 10 to 19 years of experience under their belt report earning an hourly salary in the range from $30.13 to $53.83, and those with 20 or more years of experience are usually paid between $35.23 and $50.58 per hour according to Payscale’s salary data.

Occupational therapists’ hourly pay can also vary depending on area of specialty. Therapists specializing in rehabilitation typically earn between $25.26 and $48.40 per hour, those specializing in geriatrics make between $28.66 and $46.29 per hour, and professionals specializing in acute care are paid between $24,53 and $44.94 per hour.

Occupational therapists who specialize in pediatrics report earning an hourly wage in the range from $24.83 to $60.40, those specializing in home health or home care are typically paid between $25.76 and $54.81 per hour, and professionals specializing in orthopedics generally make between $25.26 and $47.02 per hour. Professionals with the qualification of Certified Hand Therapist are usually paid an hourly wage in the range from $32 to $40 per hour according to the salary figures reported by Payscale.

Senior occupational therapists typically earn between $33.11 and $49.28 per hour hour, with overtime rates amounting to up to $67.17 according to Payscale’s data.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports a mean hourly rate of $36.73 and a median wage of $36.25 per hour for this occupation. 10% of the best paid occupational therapists earn $51.47 per hour or more, and the 10% on the lower end of the pay scale are paid up to $24.28 per hour. 25% of occupational therapists earn up to $30.06 per hour, and 75% are paid an hourly wage of up to $43.40 according to the information provided by the BLS.

The hourly wage for occupational therapists can vary considerably from industry to industry. Therapists employed at general medical and surgical hospitals earn $36.30 per hour on average, those working at nursing care facilities earn a median hourly pay of $39.99, and professionals working in home health services earn around $41.76 per hour. Occupational therapists working at offices of other health practitioners are paid $37.29 per hour on average, and those employed by elementary and secondary schools are paid around $32.91 per hour.

Occupational therapists working at specialty hospitals (except psychiatric and substance abuse hospitals) earn $37.40 per hour on average, and those employed by insurance carriers are paid $38.25 per hour on average. Therapists working in management, scientific, and technical consulting services earn an average hourly salary of $39.93, and professionals working in employment services earn around 39.34 per hour according to the salary statistics provided by the BLS.

The hourly salary can also vary significantly from state to state. Occupational therapists working in California earn an average hourly pay of $41.53, those based in New York make $35.79 per hour on average, and therapists working in Texas are paid around $40.77 per hour. Professionals employed in Pennsylvania make $33.87 per hour on average, and those based in Florida earn a median hourly wage of $33.87 according to the BLS salary data.

Occupational therapists working in Maine make $31.91 per hour on average, those based in Massachusetts are paid around $35.80 per hour, and professionals employed in Colorado earn $36.39 per hour on average. Therapists based in New Hampshire earn a median hourly wage of $31.72, and those working in Connecticut are paid around $40.21 per hour. Professionals based in Nevada earn $50.62 per hour on average, those working in New Jersey earn around $41.67 per hour, and occupational therapists employed in the District of Columbia earn an average hourly pay of $40.99 according to the BLS salary figures.

Jobstat reports that the median hourly pay for occupational therapists is $33.28, with the highest hourly wage recorded being $45.17 and the lowest, $24.55 per hour. The average hourly rate for licensed occupational therapists is $35.48, and registered occupational therapists earn around $35.04 per hour based on Jobstat’s salary data.

Benefits

Along with the basic annual salary and bonuses, occupational therapists typically get a variety of perks and benefits, and these can sometimes reflect their yearly earnings. Occupational therapists who have 401(k) plans generally report earning salaries in the range from $47,557 to $81,714 a year, those who have paid vacations and holidays typically make between $49,936 and $87,115 annually, and professionals who have paid sick leave are usually paid between $49,532 and $87,603 a year according to Payscale’s salary statistics.

Occupational therapists who get life and disability insurance as part of their benefits package typically earn an annual pay in the range from $50,343 to $88,114, and those who get reimbursement for professional training, education, tuition, or certification are generally paid between $49,592 and $91,188 annually.

Therapists who have 403(b) plans typically make between $50,012 and $88,344 a year, and those who have malpractice and liability insurance generally report earning salaries in the range from $49,276 to $91,916 a year according to Payscale’s salary data.

Other income factors

Area of specialty is another factor that can significantly affect an occupational therapist’s annual salary. Therapists specializing in rehabilitation generally earn between $48,553 and $83,176 a year, those specializing in geriatrics are usually paid between $49,490 and $76,398 annually, and professionals specializing in pediatrics typically report earning an annual pay in the range from $45,302 to $80,727.

Occupational therapists specializing in acute care are generally paid between $48,310 and $71,016 annually, and those specializing in orthopedics typically make between $44,163 and $77,763 a year. Professionals specializing in home health or home care earn salaries in the range from $41,446 to $90,000 a year, and those with the qualification of Certified Hand Therapist typically report earning a yearly income in the range from $50,868 to $92,000 according to Payscale’s salary data.

Occupational therapists’ salaries can also vary depending on the type of employer. Therapists employed by companies typically report earning salaries in the range from $45,509 to $81,873 a year, those working at hospitals are generally paid between $43,741 and $78,363 a year, and professionals employed by private practices and firms usually make between $50,531 and $82,439 annually.

Occupational therapists working for schools or school districts are usually paid an annual income in the range from $44,698 to $76,367, and those employed by non-profit organizations generally earn between $49,365 and $80,537 annually. Professionals employed by the federal government report earning salaries in the range from $60,000 to $79,400 a year, and those working for the state or local government are typically paid between $30,521 and $81,000 a year according to the salary data reported by Payscale.

Academic qualifications are another factor that can determine an occupational therapist’s annual salary. Therapists with a bachelor’s degree generally report yearly earnings in the range from $55,752 to $83,091, those with a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy (OT) are typically paid between $51,289 and $84,138 annually, and professionals with a Master of Science in Occupational Therapy (OT) earn salaries in the range from $48,044 to $86,141 a year.

Therapists with a master’s degree in Occupational Therapy (OT) make between $50,279 and $75,449 annually, those with a bachelor’s degree in Occupational Therapy (OT) are paid between $63,187 and $76,282 a year, and professionals with a Master of Arts in Occupational Therapy report annual earnings in the range from $63,433 to $79,699 according to Payscale’s data.