Police Officer Salary
Benefits & Average Salary for Police Officers

Sadly, a police officer salary doesn't fully compensate for a cops responsibility. Still, police officer benefits & retirement pension packages are great

The police officer has a very difficult job full of great responsibility. Unfortunately, the salary for police officers does not always seem comparable to the amount of work they have to do.

Like that of firefighters, school teachers, and other public service positions, the salary for police officers won't make them rich. On the other hand, it comes with a good deal of advantageous benefits (health insurance, in particular) that many jobs these days do not.

The point is that while you can expect to live comfortably, you should not make the goal of earning a police officer salary for the money. Dollars and cents may bring happiness to many, but the fulfillment of a dream, a duty, or a labor of love will bring you more smiles than any blank check ever could.

People who become police officers aren't in the game to become wealthy; rather, they do it because they feel the responsibility of caring for their community by way of service and protection.

Average Police Officer Salary & Benefits

That being said, you probably still want to know how much you can expect to pull in with a police officer salary, right?

In the United States, police officers make an average salary of just over $51,000.

The low end income for police officers is around $30,000 while there are a certain number of officers in senior positions who make well over $100,000.

On average, it may not be a fortune, but it's nothing to sneeze at, either. You can make a decent living while enforcing the peace and caring for your neighbors.

Best Police Officer Benefits

Aside from the number of zeroes on your paycheck, there are other benefits to becoming a police officer.

These include:

  • Insurance - Perhaps the most attractive of the benefits, the police officer salary provides insurance for health, dental, and life. Since it is a public service job, your health insurance is the best!
  • Sick Leave - This is a paid leave of absence for a certain number of days per month when you may have fallen unexpectedly ill.
  • Vacation Time - This is a paid leave of absence that covers a certain number of days (depending on the region, it could be two weeks) per year.
  • Allowance - Most police officers receive some kind of check for the upkeep of their uniforms and equipment.
  • Retirement - Another fantastic benefit associated with the police officer job description is the right to retire from the force and claim your pension, which is typically half the amount of your paychecks after 20-30 years of service.

What Kind of Police Officer Education is Needed

So what's the first step on the road to becoming an enforcer of the law and earning a police officer salary?

Getting an education, of course.

While the requirements for becoming a police officer aren't incredibly strict (you must be an over-20 U.S. citizen with a high school diploma or GED), it's certainly in your best interest to go above and beyond the normal.

If you wish to rise from the ranks of the $30,000 per year police officer salary and into the six-figure bracket, you need to show initiative and become educated in more advanced areas.

One way to do this is by getting your degree in criminal justice. Now don't worry, you don't need to put your policing dream on hold to do this.

You can actually do both at the same time!

When I turned away from working in corporate America to get a job as a paralegal (a long-held dream of mine), I wasn't looking forward to going back to school.

I had a monthly paycheck and a family who depended on me for paying the bills. I didn't know how I would fit college into the equation. Then I found out about online schooling.

By taking courses from an Internet-based institution, you can set your own schedule, maintain your family life, and keep your day job (if necessary).

Or, if you want to get started in law enforcement right away, you can go to school online after a shift on patrol.

For cops, getting a criminology degree online is an easy option that will increase your salary by a decent chunk of change.

Find a School!

Think a career in criminology is for you?

Then start here & find a school for you!

Imagine that: getting your college degree while earning a police officer salary at the same time. Now that's a recipe for success.

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