“When SB 616 was signed into law by Gov. Gavin Newsom last October, the Western Center on Law & Poverty estimated the average Californian owed $15,100 in non-mortgage debt, including medical, student, auto and credit card obligations.
That amount is now almost certainly higher, said Jessica Bartholow, policy advocate for the Los Angeles-based nonprofit organization, which played an instrumental role in passage of the new law.
“It’s not hard to imagine that a lot of Californians are loading up their credit cards right now, just trying to get by,” she told me. “Once debt gets to a collector, they’ll go after it any way they can.”