THE compensation delivered to those who were subject to the forced installation of prepayment meters for both electricity and gas is a “drop of the ocean” of what’s truly owed, according to Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS).

Figures released by Ofgem on Thursday show that 1502 customers have so far received compensation totalling £342,450, with suppliers planning a further £200,000 of compensation payments for 1000 more customers.

But previous estimates from CAS suggest that in Scotland alone approximately 23,936 people were forced onto a prepayment meter for their electricity supply.

For gas, around 12,000 Scots were subject to the same ordeal against their wishes.

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The charity also highlighted that energy companies had used a “back door” approach by switching smart meters into pay-as-you-go meters without their customers consent.

It’s believed around 17.952 people had their smart meters for electricity unknowingly switched while for gas it’s 12,000.

Energy spokesperson for CAS, Dr Matthew Lee, said the forced installation of prepayment meters should be banned.

“It is very welcome that Ofgem and suppliers are working together to get compensation to people who wrongly had prepayment meters installed against their wishes,” he said.

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“However, these early figures – totalling 1,502 across the UK – are potentially a drop in the ocean compared to the scale of the problem.

“In Scotland alone we estimate tens of thousands of people were forced onto pay as you go energy against their wishes.

“The forced installation of these meters should be banned permanently.

"For many people it means energy is a luxury at the start of the month, and then something they have to ration or even go without the further away the get from pay day.“

Anyone who believes they may have been subject to a forced installation and due compensation is encouraged to visit the CAS website.