Claims narrowed during examination to avoid prior art and other patent-ability issues are not entitled to the doctrine of equivalents in the United States. However, the USPTO has recently been rolling out their pro-se program in which they assist pro-se applicants to varying degrees.
The first patent I wrote myself has published; the examination process for it was very formal in which the examiner issued rejections and allowances with helpful commentary suggesting how to overcome any given issue. My most recent pro-se application, however, did not undergo this formal process; instead, the examiner rewrote various claims without issuing any sort of rejections and sent the reworked patent to me for my acceptance/rejection.
I have to wonder what impact this will have on the doctrine of equivalents. It probably will require judicial interpretation but I wonder if anyone had strong opinions or a definitive answer.