Highest Paying Jobs in Florida

A Credit Karma Study

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When it comes to salaries, Florida has a few things going for it. It has no state income tax, and the annual average salary of the best paying job in the Sunshine State ranks sixth out of 50 states. The highest paying job in Florida — anesthesiologists — has an annual mean wage of $363,570. That’s better than the corresponding national average of $331,190 for the same occupation.

To understand the highest-paying jobs in Florida and other states, Credit Karma compiled and analyzed a variety of publicly-available datasets from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Just like in many states across the nation, the five highest paying jobs in Florida are all in medicine, specifically specialist doctors:

  1. Anesthesiologists: $363,570
  2. Cardiologists: $359,420
  3. Radiologists: $318,530
  4. Emergency Medicine Physicians: $313,590
  5. Physicians, Pathologists: $251,220

But there are other high-paying jobs within other occupational areas in Florida. Read on for details.

Highest paying jobs in Florida

In Florida, as in almost every single state, jobs in the “Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Occupations” group — doctors, specifically — comprise the top-five highest paying jobs.

This table lists the highest-paying jobs in each of the BLS’s major occupational groups.

Major Occupational Group Occupation Title Annual Mean Wage
Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Occupations Anesthesiologists $363,570
Transportation and Material Moving Occupations Airline pilots, copilots, and flight engineers $232,600
Management Occupations Chief executives $215,050
Life, Physical, and Social Science Occupations Physicists $162,600
Architecture and Engineering Occupations Petroleum engineers $147,420
Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media Occupations Athletes and sports competitors $143,270
Educational Instruction and Library Occupations Health specialties teachers (postsecondary) $133,510
Computer and Mathematical Occupations Computer and information research scientists $132,170
Legal Occupations Lawyers $129,390
Business and Financial Operations Occupations Agents and business managers of artists, performers and athletes $106,940
Sales and Related Occupations Sales engineers $106,620
Protective Service Occupations First-line supervisors of police and detectives

$94,710

Production Occupations Power distributors and dispatchers $81,800
Construction and Extraction Occupations Elevator and escalator installers and repairers $79,260
Installation, Maintenance, and Repair Occupations Electrical power line installers and repairers $66,400
Healthcare Support Occupations Occupational therapy assistants $65,370
Community and Social Service Occupations Health education specialists $64,840
Office and Administrative Support Occupations First-line supervisors of office and administrative support workers $61,050
Food Preparation and Serving Related Occupations Chefs and head cooks $58,850
Personal Care and Service Occupations< Morticians, undertakers and funeral arrangers $58,190
Farming, Fishing, and Forestry Occupations First-line supervisors of farming, fishing and forestry workers $56,000
Building and Grounds Cleaning and Maintenance Occupations First-line supervisors of landscaping, lawn service and groundskeeping workers $49,530

Flying aircraft — airline pilots, copilots and flight engineers — is the highest-paying job in the “Transportation and Material Moving Occupations” group with an average annual income in Florida of $232,600. That’s much better than the U.S. average, which is $198,190.

In fact, many of the highest paying jobs in Florida beat their national counterparts in salary. For example, physicists in Florida earn an average of $162,600, compared to the national average of $151,580.

Some high paying jobs in Florida, however, fall below the national benchmark.

For instance, Florida’s highest paying job in “Legal Occupations” is lawyers. They pull in an average of $129,390 a year in Florida, compared to the national average of $148,030 a year. Another example is sales engineers. This is the highest paying job in the “Sales and Related Occupations” occupational group in 29 out of 50 states. In Florida, the average annual income for a sales engineer is $106,620, versus a national average $118,630.

Other notable high-paying jobs in Florida

More findings from this study that are unique to Florida include:

  • Agents and business managers of artists, performers and athletes: This job falls under the “Business and Financial Operations Occupations” occupational category. In 37 out of 50 states, the highest paying job in this category is personal financial advisors. Florida is unusual in having agents and business managers of artists, performers, and athletes as the top-paying career in this occupational group, with a mean annual wage of $106,940.
  • Athletes and sports competitors: Florida has a lot of cities with professional sports teams — Jacksonville, Miami, Tampa and Orlando, for example – which helps explain why this job ranks as the highest paying job in the “Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media Occupations” occupational category.
  • Health education specialists: This career falls under “Community and Social Service Occupations.” Health education specialist is the highest paying job in the this occupational group in eight states, including Florida. In the Sunshine State, this job earns an average annual wage of $64,840.

High-paying jobs and taxes in Florida

While Florida has its share of high paying jobs, several occupations earn average wages that fall below their corresponding national averages. A big consolation, however, is that Florida has no state income tax. Not having state income taxes taken out of your salary means your paycheck, even if it’s less than the national average, can go a bit further in Florida than in other places with individual income taxes.

 Our cost of living calculator can help you get a sense how far your salary may — or may not — go in different cities across Florida.

Methodology

To identify the highest-paying jobs in Florida, we analyzed all U.S. states, then scored and ranked jobs  based on the following criteria:                             

  • Annual mean wage for occupations, with occupations chosen based on the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) that categorizes an occupational level as “detailed”; other SOC occupation levels such as “major”, “minor”, and “broad” were excluded for being too general in their occupational title.                                 
  • Hourly mean wage for occupations, with occupations chosen based on the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) that categorizes an occupational level as “detailed”; other SOC occupation levels such as “major”, “minor”, and “broad” were excluded for being too general in their occupational title.

Sources

Bureau of Labor Statistics – Occupational Employment Statistics – May 2021