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How Much Money Does 'Law and Order: SVU' Star Mariska Hargitay Make Per Episode?

Photo credit: NBC - Getty Images
Photo credit: NBC - Getty Images

From Country Living

Mariska Hargitay has been the face of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit for nearly two decades. The actress appeared in a handful of movies and television shows in the early 1990s before she rose to fame through her iconic role as Olivia "Liv" Benson, the commanding officer of the Manhattan SVU on the NBC series. Though other SVU cast members have come and gone over the past 20 years, Mariska has remained loyal to the procedural police drama-and it's been worth it.

According to Forbes, the 55-year-old is now one of the highest-paid actresses on television. With Law & Order: SVU recently renewed for season 21, it doesn't seem like Mariska has any plans to slow down (or stop making money). Here's a breakdown of how the TV star amassed her enormous fortune.

What is Mariska Hargitay's salary?

Photo credit: NBC - Getty Images
Photo credit: NBC - Getty Images

The moment Mariska read the script for Law & Order: SVU, the actress knew she was meant to play Olivia Benson-so she went to great lengths during her audition to make sure she got the part. Decades later, it's clear that Mariska's intuition was spot on. The historic success of SVU is largely due to her powerful performances, so it makes sense that she's the highest paid actor on the show.

In 2014, Forbes reported that Mariska made an estimated $450,000 per episode that year. However, an updated list of small-screen stars' salaries from June 2017 through June 2018 reports that she raked in a total of $13 million. Law & Order: SVU's 19th season aired 24 episodes during that time period, so the actress was likely making closer to $540,000 for her part in each one.

What is Mariska Hargitay's net worth?

Photo credit: NBC - Getty Images
Photo credit: NBC - Getty Images

After 20 years of playing Olivia on SVU, Mariska has earned a lot of money. Today, she's worth an estimated $50 million-but she makes sure to give back. The actress takes her television role seriously, and some might say she brings her work home with her.

In 2004, Mariska launched a nonprofit foundation directly related to what her character deals with on the show: sexual assault victims. Much of her earnings from SVU have contributed to the success of Joyful Heart, whose mission is to "transform society's response to sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse support survivors' healing, and end this violence forever."

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