The trials and tribulations of the Fallout MMO story are almost novel worthy. In a nut shell, here is where the Bethesda vs. Interplay story currently stands: Bethesda, owners of the Fallout franchise, were denied a preliminary injunction against Interplay, original creators of the Fallout series. Had the injunction gone through this would have prevented Interplay from using anything to do with Fallout in Fallout Online’s production for a limited time. The legal troubles are far from over though, as licencing issues still mean the game may not see launch (even if completed).
Thanks to Joystiq for the info.