A HOBART man has lodged a discrimination claim after state authorities did not recognise him as next of kin when his male partner died, in a case that has triggered fresh calls for same-sex marriage laws.
Ben Jago and his partner were a couple for more than five years and, after living together, built a house in Hobart's Old Beach.
They shared finances and two much-loved dogs, Indigo and Hunter.
But when the partner died in January, his body was released to his family, not Mr Jago.
Mr Jago says this meant he was not involved in funeral arrangements for his partner, who he says was then buried in his regional home town - even though Mr Jago says he wanted to be cremated and laid to rest in Hobart.
He said that the experience made his partner's death even more stressful and traumatic, and left him feeling "worthless".
"Prejudice is still alive and well and is still disadvantaging and damaging people like me," Mr Jago said.
This week, Mr Jago decided to take his case to the state's Anti-Discrimination Tribunal, arguing that Tasmania Police and the coroner's office discriminated against him on the basis of his sexual orientation.
He is asking for written apologies and for both organisations to introduce training around recognising and respecting same-sex relationships.
Community Legal Centres Tasmania spokesman Benedict Bartl said that Mr Jago had a strong case and that Tasmania had legislation to specifically recognise same-sex relationships.
Mr Bartl said there was a "failure to ask questions" at the time of the partner's death.
Anti-Discrimination Commissioner Robin Banks has not yet decided whether the alleged conduct happened or was unlawful.
But she has found there were "possible" breaches of the Tasmanian Anti-Discrimination Act.
Tasmania's Relationships Act recognises "significant" relationships where a couple are not married.
This can either be through the couple registering the relationship or by meeting conditions such as the duration of the relationship, financial interdependence, property, and mutual commitment.
In a letter to Ms Banks, the coronial division of the Tasmanian Magistrates Court said there had been "no discrimination".
It said the coroner determined that Mr Jago and his partner "did not have a significant relationship" because there was "no proof of registration".
In October, in another letter to Ms Banks, Tasmania Police said next-of-kin status was an "issue for the coroner's office to determine".
But it said its own view was based on "information provided by Mr Jago concerning the status of his relationship ... at the time of his partner's death".
But in a statement on Friday, Tasmanian Police Commissioner Darren Hine offered his condolences to Mr Jago on the loss of his partner.
Mr Hine said the police would do a "full review" of the matter to see if they needed to review its next-of-kin procedures.
"I would stress through, that while determining next-of-kin can be legally complex, sexuality is not a consideration," Mr Hine said.