Overview of the Cruise Vessel Security Safety Act of 2010 (CVSSA)

Our lead trial lawyer Brett Rivkind has an international reputation for dedication and excellence. His hard work and success have been recognized extensively through awards and special recognitions.

Due to the increasing number of crimes aboard cruise ships, including disappearances and passengers or crew going overboard, President Obama signed into law the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act on July 27, 2010.

Our firm is proud to have been part of the movement toward this historical legislation which for the first time implemented mandatory reporting requirement for cruise ship, ship operators to report crimes occurring aboard cruise ships. Brett Rivkind was an invited speaker before Congress as a maritime expert to provide useful information regarding cruise ship safety and security. Mr. Rivkind was able to share his 25 years of experience handling maritime cases involving incidents on cruise ships, including sexual assaults, disappearances, and other types of accidents which led to serious injuries, and even deaths. As a result of the Congressional hearings, the CVSSA was eventually signed into law by President Obama. In addition, as a result of our firm’s efforts in bringing awareness to the public the security and safety issues that are present in the cruise ship industry, we believe the cruise ship industry has started to positively act to address many of the safety and security issues. Of course, since passage of the act, we have seen many horrible incidents involving cruise ships, mainly the tragic incident involving the Costa Concordia, where many deaths occurred. We have witnessed ships losing power, catching fire, as well as passengers and crewmembers continuing to go overboard during a cruise. Our firm has been retained in many cases, including a case where a mother lost her daughter, who went overboard during a cruise. We are helping victims of the Costa Concordia incident. We continue to see cases involving passengers getting sexually assaulted during a cruise.

We are proud to also see our good friend, Kendall Carver, continue in his relentless efforts to push for better safety laws and regulations, as his organization, International Cruise Victims has grown and spread worldwide. Our firm is proud to have helped Kendall Carver when he initially formed this organization, and we are so pleased to see how it has grown and what the organization has been able to accomplish.

With respect to the CVSSA, we know it still needs tweaking, and some revisions to put more teeth into the intended purposes of passage of this law. This will be a constant battle as the cruise ship industry continues to spend millions lobbying Congress each year to avoid being regulated and to avoid passage of further laws, as well as to seek passage of more favorable laws that shield them from liability.

Please read the model course CVSSA on crime prevention, detention, evidence preservation & Reporting for cruise vessels, which was prepared by the U.S. Coast Guard, the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Our firm will continue to act as safety advocates, pushing for better safety laws on the waterways, including safety laws that govern the cruise ship industry.


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Brett Rivkind is a lawyer that not only cares but also a lawyer that makes a difference. Whether its speaking in congress to help promote safety awareness in legislation or representing clients in court seeking compensation for their injuries, Brett Rivkind is passionate about his dedication toward both promoting safety at sea and helping clients in need who have been harmed at sea.

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Jury verdict obtained by Brett Rivkind selected to hall of fame of jury verdicts. This case is believed to be a record verdict of this particular type of case.

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