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https://www.forbes.com/sites/kirimasters/2019/08/08/california-lawsuit-says-amazon-should-pay-billions-in-back-taxes/

Apparently an obscure business forced the California government to collect tax from amazon.

How does that make any sense? How can a private company force the government to collect taxes?

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  • It would be more accurate to say they're trying to force the government to do this.
    – Barmar
    Nov 28 '20 at 13:49
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Apparently an obscure business forced the California government to collect tax from amazon.

No, this is not true.

Mr. Grosz filed a lawsuit asking the court to force California to collect tax revenues. The lawsuit is still pending before the court without a decision on the merits. As the saying goes, anyone can sue for anything; their success is another matter.

The apparent legal basis for standing is section 526a of the Code of Civil Procedure, which allows taxpayers to sue against wasteful or illegal government spending:

526a (a) An action to obtain a judgment, restraining and preventing any illegal expenditure of, waste of, or injury to, the estate, funds, or other property of a local agency, may be maintained against any officer thereof, or any agent, or other person, acting in its behalf, either by a resident therein, or by a corporation, who is assessed for and is liable to pay, or, within one year before the commencement of the action, has paid, a tax that funds the defendant local agency ...

The Plaintiff has claimed that, allegedly, there is a mandatory duty to collect taxes and that failure to do so constitutes a waste.

The court will decide if it will accept this argument and compel the collection.

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