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Byline: Lawrence Messina
Jun. 22--In a case closely watched by West Virginia business, the state Supreme Court on Friday rejected a bid for special jury damages against Ford Motor Co. in an insurance case.
The justices unanimously concluded that Ford is not governed by the state Unfair Trade Practices Act, which guards against and punishes "unfair methods of competition or unfair or deceptive acts or practices."
But the justices did order Ford to pay the fees and costs of the lawyers for the Taylor County couple who sued the automaker.
Dorothy and Paul Hawkins alleged that Ford wrongly refused to compensate them after their Aerostar caught fire and burned in their driveway in October 1996.
Ford's own recall notice and an investigation by the couple's insurer, …