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You would get payed if you stayed longer? Here (Portugal) it's common practice for every kind of dev to work overtime with no extra pay, it's seen as a trait of the job and it's not just when there's a huge deadline, because there always is.

I have worked in places where overtime was just a part of the job and I didn't last in such places for very long.

I have at times had to suffer such treatment because I needed the paycheck even if I wasn't getting paid extra for the extra hours.

However there was still the choice to leave such a job and deal with the consequences.

On one occasion I wasn't even given the choice. It was expected and I didn't live up to those expectations. I wasn't that upset in the end because even though money was tight for a while I still made it through and got another job within a couple of weeks. I was much happier in the new position and most of the people I knew who worked for that company eventually left anyway.

At some companies I would get paid for the extra time or at least would be given paid time off later on. I just had to ask. Otherwise I would just go home at my normal time.

These days I probably wouldn't even work over time if you paid me extra. I only work overtime if I made a promise to deliver something by a certain date (and I rarely make those promises unless I'm certain) or if I have some stake in the company. That's largely because I'm in a position where I'm not living paycheck to paycheck anymore and don't need to work for my employers if I don't want to.

Admittedly if you're just starting out or this kind of "overtime culture," is pervasive everywhere ymmv.

I think your end point is a key point. If you are in a situation to do so, skip the BMW/big house etc and shoot for more financial independence - by that I mean just having some savings to make you comfortable as a first step. It will vastly change your ability to say 'no', 'I quit', or 'Im going home because its late'

Same in the US. I have never heard of software developers (who work as full-time employees) earning overtime pay. I'm not sure if contractors who bill hours are eligible for overtime pay.

at a prior job, all the entry-level (less than two or three years experience & not in management roles, iirc) programmers were rather suddenly made overtime eligible (due i think to legal action in some other state). handy given that it was rare for any of us to work less than 50 hours a week....

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