May 18, 2016 10:16 AM EDT

Obama Announces Overtime Pay Changes For Millions Of Workers

President Barack Obama has finalized the changes in overtime pay rule for millions of workers. The White House made the announcement on Tuesday.

CNN reported that a new rule announced by the Obama administration last May 17 has made more workers eligible for overtime pay. Employees who make a salary of less than $47,476, or about $913 a week, will be qualified for overtime pay if they work more than 40 hours per week.

The new figure is double the $23,660 threshold, or $455 a week, that is currently in effect. This has garnered criticisms from several employers.

The change will be rolled out on Dec. 1, 2016. The new rule is placed to give justice to low-salaried employees who work for long hours but are exempt from overtime because they also perform some managerial duties.

Previously, the percentage of workers who are eligible for overtime has fallen to 7 percent from 1975's 62 percent. The new threshold will make 35 percent of salaried workers, as per Labor Secretary Thomas Perez.

It will also be updated every three years to ensure that it remains at the 40th percentile of full-time salaries in the lowest income region of the U.S. This may rise to $51,000 by 2020 based on wage growth projections.

"This is a step in the right direction to strengthen and secure the middle class by raising Americans' wages," President Obama wrote in an email to petition signers. "When workers have more income, they spend it - often at businesses in their local community - and that helps grow the economy for everyone."

According to The Hill, Perez said that 4.2 million workers, of which more than half are women, will benefit the new overtime pay rule. Moreover, workers will earn an additional $12 billion in wages over the next 10 years.

The administration will give business owners more than six months to facilitate the compliance of the new rule. Perez added that their goal is "to work with employers."

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