Visa petitions for a H-1B visas are filed by the United States employer and require a Bachelor's degree or its equivalent, and a job offer which requires the degree. Work authorization remains specific to the employer.
H1-B visa maybe be approved for up to three (3) years and may be extended for a total of six (6) years. Applications for permanent residency submitted at least 1 year prior to the end of the sixth year may grant additional yearly extensions.
An approved labor condition attestation form the Department of Labor is required prior to filing the petition with the Immigration Service in order to ensure that the wages and working conditions do not undermine those for US workers.
The spouses and children of H1-B visas are eligible for H-4 dependent status, which does not grant employment authorization. There is a yearly cap on H-1B visas.