What does 15 to life mean?

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When the district attorney offers "15 to life" or "20 to life" to a defendant, does it mean that he/she is offering them 15 years instead of life?

Or does it mean they'll do between 15 years and life which doesn't make sense as much.

Or does it have a different meaning?

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15 to life means the criminal the felon must serve a minimum sentence of 15 years before parole can be heard but to serve no more than the rest of his or her natural life in jail meaning after 15 years they will get parole hearing but could potentially die in jail

To the UK responders, life in the UK now means 30 years but in extreme cases like killing police officers or children (after the Huntley case) life can mean a whole life term
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It means they will be looking at 15 years to life. Meaning they can do anywhere from 15 years to life.
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15 to life means that the person will be in prison for a minimum of 15 years.  No consideration for parole or early release until after those 15 years are done.  Of course, if they don't qualify for some form of parole, they will be in prison until the day they die.  In other words, for life.
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A sentence of "15 to life" is what's called an indeterminate sentence which means the prisoner might serve a minimum of 15 years and then be granted parole or their crimes might be too heinous they'll never be released. A Determinate sentence is when the outcome is already known such as a death sentence or life without parole. In a lot of states when u are convicted of 1st-degree murder it's automatically a life without parole
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people seem to think life really does mean life, and it does SOMETIMES

a life sentence is *usually* only 25 years.

A life sentence without parole is until the person dies.

so 15 to life without parole, is 15 to the end of the life. any time in between.

15 to life[with parole] is generally 15-25 years.
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It means you will be spending a length of time ranging from 15 years to the rest of your life in prison.
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When a DA offers "15 to life" they mean that the defendant will be incarcerated for between 15 years to the end of their life.
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I think 'life' is 30 years. Or 15.

Ian Huntley got two life sentences for murdering Holly and Jessica and he can apply for parole after about thirty years. I think anyway.
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it means that the penalty of the charge is a minium of 15 years and a maxium of life, it is left up to the judge to decide the exact sentence after the defendant is found guilty during the hearing.
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