Augusta nursing home settles lawsuit without admitting negligence

One of two Augusta nursing homes sued over allegations that poor care led to a patient’s suffering has settled without any admission of wrong-doing.


In a joint motion for an order approving the settlement filed Wednesday, James Harris, on behalf of his father, James M. Mason, and The Place at Deans Bridge Road announced they had agreed on a settlement to end the litigation.

Harris filed a Richmond County Superior Court lawsuit against The Place at Deans Bridge Road and Golden Living Center accusing both nursing homes of putting corporate profits above patient care by not staffing at adequate levels to provide residents proper care.

The litigation against the owners of Golden Living and its nursing home administrator Elize Joseph continues.

Judge Ashley Wright approved the settlement between Harris and The Place at Deans Bridge Road and its nursing home administrator Melissa Oden this week.

Mason was admitted to The Place at Deans Bridge Road on Sept. 24, 2012. He was 62 and in need of skilled nursing care. According to the original complaint filed in January, Mason developed urinary tract infections, injuries from numerous falls, dehydration, weight loss and renal failure. After he was hospitalized with pneumonia in September 2015, his family Mason moved to Golden Living. He died Nov. 3, 2015.

At the time of his death, Mason was of advanced age and he was not employable, which reduced any economic damages for the estate, according to the settlement document.

Harris agreed to a one-time lump sum payment, the amount is to remain confidential under the agreement. Attorney fees and court cost, and medical expenses for his father will come out of the settlement payment.

Reach Sandy Hodson at or (706) 823-3226