According to a very strict Federal Regulation (42.CFR), the Student Assistance Counselor cannot disclose to anyone any information that a student discusses with them, without the permission of the student. There are only two exceptions to this law. The first is in instances where the student expresses the desire to hurt himself/herself or another person. The second exception involves situations of abuse. In both cases the SAC is obligated to inform school or legal personnel.
However, there are a few exceptions to this law. If a student tells the SAC that he/she wishes to hurt him/herself or anyone else, actions must be taken to prevent this from happening. Also, if a student discloses that abuse is happening to him/her, the SAC counselor has the obligation to report the abuse.
With this confidentiality law, students feel more comfortable disclosing information to their counselors. In most cases holding information in and letting it build can have a detrimental effect. The SAC gives the students the opportunity to vent in a safe place where they know the information will not leave the office.