California Civil Code
(a) As used in this title:
(1) “Debt buyer” means a person or entity that is regularly engaged in the business of purchasing charged-off consumer debt for collection purposes, whether it collects the debt itself, hires a third party for collection, or hires an attorney-at-law for collection litigation. “Debt buyer” does not mean a person or entity that acquires
a charged-off consumer debt incidental to the purchase of a portfolio predominantly consisting of consumer debt that has not been charged off.
(2) “Charged-off consumer debt” means a consumer debt that has been removed from a creditor’s books as an asset and treated as a loss or expense.
(b) The acquisition by a check services company of the right to collect on a paper or electronic check instrument, including an Automated Clearing House item, that has been returned unpaid to a merchant does not constitute a purchase of delinquent consumer debt under this title.
(c) Terms defined in Title 1.6C (commencing with Section 1788) shall apply to this title.
(d) This title shall apply to debt buyers with respect to all consumer debt sold or resold on or after January 1, 2014.