LPN Salaries by State

The nursing field, according to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS), is the largest employer in the health care field. This includes ranks of all nurses from the most junior staff like the licensed practice nurses to the highest ranked PhD holder nurses.  BLS indicates that there are close to 3 million nursing jobs in the US alone and more nurses are needed given the increasing needs of healthcare.

Just like any other profession, there is observed disparity between the lowest paid health care staff and those on the higher bracket. Salaries in the health care field differ from state to state and also within states depending on the experience of the nurses. Nurses who have advanced education also receive higher salaries compared to those whose academic levels are a bit low. Nursing salaries also vary from employer to employer where some employers pay the same ranks of nurses better than others.

However, there is an observed margin of salaries in each state that prevails. These averages regardless of which employers are involved have slight outliers on both the higher and lower margin. But most healthcare institutions follow a similar trend in paying nurses in a given rank.

Licensed Practice Nurse (LPN) – Salaries by state

The list below gives the salaries of licensed practice nurse or licensed vocational nurses as they are known in CA and TX. On a general note, LPN salaries range from $28000 to 46000 in all states. Credible companies have conducted research to determine the average LPN salaries by state and here are the outcomes.

Top Ten Highest Paying States for LPN

This list of the top ten highest paying paying states for LPNs and LVNs is extracted from the latest occupational employment statistics from the bureau of labor and statistics. The average salary figures have been obtained by calculating the hourly average of each and multiplying to the recommended 2080 hours of annual work.

i)        Connecticut

BLS data shows Connecticut as the highest paying state for LPNs with an average annual salary of $53280. This translates to $25.7 hourly wage for a LPN.

ii)      New Jersey

NJ follows it neighbor CT to be the second highest paying state for LPNs; with an annual average wage of $50950

iii)    Rhode Island

On third place comes RI, still on the same geographical location with an annual mean of $50900. All the three states above are located at the North-Eastern region of US and are border to border neighboring states.

iv)    California

California (CA) according to BLS is second from top with the highest employment levels of Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) professionals and comes after Texas (TX). In addition to being one of the highest employer of LVNs in the US, it is ranked 4th amongst the highest paying state for LVNs. The annual salary mean for a LVN in CA is estimated to be at $50,490. It is the highest paying State on the Western region of US. By the way, an LPN is called an LVN in California and Texas.

v)      Nevada (NV)

Nevada comes after California as the top fifth highest paying state for LPNs. The trend can be compared to its immediate neighbor, California and has an annual mean wage of $50,150. The other five top states are:

vi)    Massachusetts with annual average of $49,620

vii)  District of Columbia at a mean of $49,400

viii)  Maryland with annual mean of $49,330

ix)     Arizona with an annual mean of 48,390

x)      Delaware at $47,800

Lowest Paying States for a LPN

From the same occupational employement statistics estimates from BLS, the following are the ten states which have recorded the lowest mean wages for LPNs:

i)        West Virginia

West Virginia records as the lowest paying state in the US with an annual mean salary of $32750. LPNs in WA receive an average hourly wage of $15.75.

ii)      Oklahoma

OK follows WA on the lower margin giving LPNs an annual salary mean of $33900. BLS on the other hand has also ranked OK to be the fourth state with the highest concentration of LPNs jobs in the US.

iii)    South Dakota

SD is ranked as the 3rd lowest paying state for LPNs, where LPNs receive an average of $33910 annual salary.

iv)    Alabama

On the same geographical region with OK and AR, AL falls on the fourth poorest paying states for the services of Licensed Practical Nurses. LPNs in AL must expect to get a mean wage of 34170 annually.

v)      Arkansas

AK, the immediate neighboring state of OK has been ranked as the 5th state with lower wages for LPNs in US. Just like OK, AR ranks 2nd on the BLS occupational wages page on the highest concentration of jobs. The other five on the list of the poorest paying states for LPNs are:

vi)     Mississippi; giving its LPNs an annual average wage of $34930

vii)  North Dakota at $35320 annual mean salary

viii)            Montana at $35660

ix)    Missouri at 35870

x)      Guam Islands at 35950


LPNs salaries by states are observed to follow a geographical trend for both highly paying and lowest paying states. However, these are average figures and salaries within a state vary greatly from one employer to the next.