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I hydroplaned in rain & hit the inside concrete wall, rolled my truck. I got a tkt for fail to maintain my lane. What can I do?

Irving, TX |

I was driving in the far inside lane on my lunch hour in the rain. I hydroplaned, did a 180 and hit the inside concrete wall, rolled 3 times, and landed in my same lane, facing the same direction I was going. I didn't hit anyone or anything else. I totalled my SUV. I was ticketed for failing to maintain my lane. It is over $400. I totalled my truck, almost died, have a huge hospital bill, and they still ticket me??? I'm a full time student, as well as work full time. I can't afford to pay this ticket. I've tried everything I know to get it dismissed or something. I even wrote 2 seperate letters to the municipal courts. I had also been to the courts and spoke to people in the windows, and I felt dicrimiated against. What can I do about this?
The accident was in Arlington, Texas.

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Attorney answers 4


I have actually been in your exact situation. Most civil traffic tickets are issued without regard for whether the conduct was intentional. I know it's not the answer you're looking for, but based on the facts you have provided, you will likely have to pay the fine. Many municipal courts will allow a party to set up a payment plan to pay an outstanding fine. You should contact the court to make arrangements for payment. This is something you should address, as failure to pay a fine can result in suspension of a license and a warrant being issued for your arrest.

Disclaimer: This post is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide legal advice or create an attorney/client relationship. To obtain legal advice, you should discuss the specific facts of your case with an attorney licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.


I have done some municipal prosecution. If you don't have the money to hire an attorney, my recommendation is to plead not guilty, get a trial date and the talk to the prosecutor about a plea bargain. I do not know which prosecutor you will be dealing with but you may be able to get a reduced fine if you explain your situation. Just be aware that most of the people who speak to the prosecutor claim not to have been at fault so he/she may be a little jaded when you tell your story. If the prosecutor won't reduce the fine, you can always go to trial and maybe the judge will be more sympathetic.


The only way to deal with a ticket is to get it dismissed, reduce the fine or pay it in full. What you do not want is to have your license suspended on top of it for having a judgment against you for an unpaid traffic ticket. You should speak with a traffic attorney in your area and see what can be done--

I hope this helps-
Nima Taradji

Disclaimer: I am a lawyer licensed in the State of Illinois only, and I am not your lawyer (unless you have been in my office and signed a contract). This communication is not intended as legal advice, and no attorney client relationship results. Please consult your own attorney for legal advice. This is for informational purposes only.


You need to set your ticket for trial and be prepared to go all the way in case the prosecutor will not work with you. Obviously any deal involving a deferred prosecution will guarantee that it will not affect your drivers license unless you violate the terms of the probation. Most cities have payment agreements for this type of probation and the fines and court costs are negotiable with the city.
There are numerous attorneys in Texas who specialize in traffic ticket defense and most require less than $100 and sometimes less than $50 as a retainer to handle the ticket. You might try to find one of those attorneys who practice in Tarrant County or calling the Tarrant County Bar Association for a referral.

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