1 year cool off after L1A , does it need to be continuous 12 months ?

I was in the USA on L1A till 23rd Feb 2015. My visa was capped off (7 years) and as a result I came back to India.While in India, during the cool off period, I had to accompany my wife(who is on H1B) to the USA in the month of Aug 2015. Due to some personal reasons I had to go on a long leave and continued staying in the USA & came back to India end of March 2016. During this time I was on dependent VISA of my wife , i.e. H4;Now I understand I have to physically stay outside of US to reset and be eligible to apply again for a working visa. But does the 1 year need to be a continuous 12 months or it might be a total of 12 months over the past 3 years ?

Can you kindly suggest ? So standing at this point, when can I apply for an L1A ( my company will) or when I can apply for an H1B ?Kindly let me know please !

It has to be continuous 12 months. You can apply for L-1A in Mar 2017 and for H-1 in April 2017. You can still travel to US on H-4, but that would not let the 12 month clock reset.