The Average Salary of Supreme Court Justices


The U.S. Supreme Court justices must reveal their financial information every year, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, to ensure that their financial interests don't affect their decisions. Their salary is $244,400, although Chief Justice John Roberts made $255,500. They're able to supplement this income in a variety of ways, though, and eight of the nine justices are millionaires.

Supplemental Income

  • During their three months of vacation, most justices lecture at universities, making as much as $20,000 for a few days' work. In 2013, Justice Antonin Scalia made 28 trips for speaking engagements and earned $77,000 from book royalties. Justice Sonia Sotomayor earned $2 million from her book.

State Supreme Court Justices

  • There is very little that the state supreme courts have in common. Justices serve for different terms, from six years to life. Some states have five justices, some seven and some nine. Some are appointed, and some are elected. As of Jan. 1, 2014, the median annual salary for chief justices was $162,200, and it was $159,064 for associate justices, according to the National Center for State Courts. The chief justice in California earned $232,060 per year. A justice in Maine made $123,000; in Idaho, $122,000; in Hawaii, $206,000; and, in Alabama, $160,000 to $200,000.

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